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A l l T h i n gs Te x a n

Volume 6 Issue 5, 2012 • Holiday

15Holida olida Recies Favorite

See the Greatest Manuscript Discovery of the 20th Century

The Top Restaurant Row in Texas

Two Days in Boerne Calvert’s Kolache Twins $4.95

Serving Czech Pastries with a Smile and a Dance

Family Outing Texas Pumpkin Patches


Books for Young Texans

Christmas in the Lone Star State What to See and Do This Holiday Season

Hunting Lessons with Dad

What One Father Taught His Daughter Volume 6 Issue 5

TexasLIVE All Things Texan

The Dead Sea Scrolls

A Gift from the Heart

Readers Share Their Favorite Handmade Gifts

It’s never been easier to build a home in the country. Texas Casual Cottages by Trendmaker.

We make it easy to build a home in the country with Texas Casual Cottages by Trendmaker, one of Houston’s premier luxury home builders for over forty years. You can escape from all that big city stress with a second home for weekend retreats, or get away for good with a full-time residence. We build on your land throughout central Texas and the Hill Country. We have two beautiful model home parks, one in Round Top, and the other in Wimberley. We invite you to ex perience Texas Casual Cottages for yourself. Come on out for a visit, tour our fully decorated models, kick back on the porch, and soak it all in. We’ll warn


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We make it easy to build a home in the country with Texas Casual Cottages by Trendmaker, one of Houston’s premier luxury home builders for over forty years. You can escape from all that big city stress with a second home for weekend retreats, or get away for good with a full-time residence. We build on your land throughout central Texas and the Hill Country. We have two beautiful model home parks, one in Round Top, and the other in Wimberley. We invite you to ex perience Texas Casual Cottages for yourself. Come on out for a visit, tour our fully decorated models, kick back on the porch, and soak it all in. We’ll warn you now — you won’t want to leave! We offer a wide range of plans and options that will fit your lifestyle. For more info, check out our website. You deserve a Texas Casual Cottage.

TEXASLIVE Volume 6 Issue 5

Publisher: Rachael Hall Senior Editor: Natalie Lacy Lange Managing Editor: Veronica Smith Art Director: Lorraine Vogel Senior Advertising Executive: Marilyn Smith Advertising Executives: Stephani Allen, Pam Hendrichsen Operations Manager: Jerry McLennan Proofing Editor: Raye Green Contributing Writers: Cynthia Beard, Holly Beretto, Clover Carroll, Rachel Carroll, Sarah Chelf, Karen Crabtree Lange, Raye Green, Ross Minarcik. Michael Shoup Contributing Photographers: Sarah Chelf, Michael Tuuk, Steven Walenta Special Thanks To: Shari Tackert Advisory Team: Trenton Hall, Ann & Don Kinney

CONTACT Texas LIVE: Phone: 979-251-8333 Fax: 979-251-8707 Mailing Address: 2305 S. Day St., #218, Brenham, TX 77833 Email:

©BN Publications, Inc. 2012. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form without the express written consent of the copyright owner. Texas LIVE Magazine does not necessarily endorse the views and perceptions of contributors or advertisers. Texas LIVE Magazine welcomes unsolicited submissions and photographs, but does not assume responsibility for publication or return of materials. When any editorial or photography submission, whether in advertisements or editorial, is provided to Texas LIVE, by any means whether electronically or otherwise, the person/ business making the submission assumes all responsibility that the submission does not infringe on any third party’s rights and title, including all copyrights and/or releases. No fees are due to anyone, including photographer or models, unless previously agreed upon by all parties involved.

LIVE S A X E T 15Holidaies Rec texasl




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6 Issue

5, 2012

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ead Sea The Dcrolls S

About the Cover Make your own snowy Christmas scene this year (page 43). Photo by Natalie Lacy Lange

cript st Manus ntury Greate h Ce See the ry of the 20t Discove


g Texans for Youn Books ate Stary St son LoneHol ida Sea in theDo This tmasSee and d Chris What to with Da ns ghter Lesso His Dau Taught HuntOning Father e Hearts What the ade Gift from ft dm Gi A Favorite Han s Share


2 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |



Contents Volume 6 Issue 5



Christmas in the Country ..................36 Contributor Ross Minarcik reminisces Christmas as a child in Fayette county Made with Love ...............................40 Handmade gift ideas for those we love Hunting Lessons ...............................58 Editor Natalie Lacy Lange takes on the hunt



40 TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 3

DEPARTMENTS Stomping Grounds

Travel Texas...............................11 Brenham’s Christmas Stroll A night of lights, shopping, and entertainment in Brenham’s historic downtown

Travel Texas...............................14 The Dead Sea Scrolls Don’t miss a rare chance to see them in Fort Worth.

Travel Texas...............................16 Cleburne’s Whistle Stop Christmas Over 3 million lights of fun


Good Living

Business Profile...........................27 South Texas Tack Boots, hats, and sexy jeans for all

Hobby........................................30 Star Trails Photographer Steven Walenta spends a night under the stars.

Entertainment............................32 Surviving Football Season Ten months of blissful marriage preceded these newlyweds’ first football season

Book Review..............................34 Books for Young Texans


Home & Garden

Dreaming of a White Christmas.........................43 Make your own snow scene

The House that Love Rebuilt.......45 A forgotten farmhouse transforms into a warm family home

Rooting Plants—It’s in the Bag!...52 The Zip it and Clip it method to rooting plants

Down the Road

Allenfarm, Texas........................54 Stories of the past come alive on Highway 159 as relics of history stand frozen in time.

Taste of Texas

In Season...................................67 Pecans

Authentic Tamale Making..........68 A family holiday tradition

Recipes......................................70 A collection of sweet treats for your holiday table

Give the Taste of Texas..............74 Find the perfect cookbook for the foodie in your family

4 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

30 Every Issue: Editor’s Letter.......................................6 Contributors........................................8 Events Guide.....................................78 Scene in Texas..................................80


Letter from the EDITOR


raditions play such a central role during the holidays. They help us feel grounded. They let us know that whatever else is happening in life and in the world, some things don’t have to change. Whatever chaos and stress that comes with the season can disappear—even if only temporarily— when it’s finally time for one of those favorite yearly rituals. Some of the most beloved holiday traditions have been passed down for many generations, and Natalie Lacy Lange some are part of a cultural heritage. Many are a combination of culture, family, and religion, reminding us who we are and where we come from. Not surprisingly, many of the articles in our holiday issue are centered around favorite traditions: football games (page 32); community Christmas events (pages 11, 16, 80); hunting season (page 58); Christmas with the grandparents (page 36); and giving handmade gifts, an old custom that has seen a refreshing resurgence (page 40). And we could never leave out the importance of food—those tasty traditions feed our bodies and our souls. Read about the Lopez family’s tradition of making tamales together each year before Christmas (page 68). Fortunately for our waistlines, many of the richest and most decadent recipes are only served during the holidays. But aren’t they worth it? How could we get through the festivities without the promise of all the traditional homemade candy, cookies, cakes, and pies? One of my favorite Christmas traditions has the sweet combination of time with family and enough butter and sugar to last all year. Like millions of other families, we bake Christmas cookies together. Even as a kid, it was one of the things I looked forward to the most at Christmas. Back then, we did it on Christmas Eve for treats to leave out for Santa, and it was probably the only thing that kept us from going completely bonkers in anticipation of his visit. My sister, brother, and I would sit at the kitchen counter and watch my mom roll out the dough and help us with the cookie cutters. Mostly, our job was to add the sprinkles and eat as many scraps of dough as possible. We made a mess, we had fun, and for a moment, we focused on making something for someone else—even if he was fictional. Even though it’s a little different now, I’m so glad that we still make time for this tradition together. I think it means a little more to me each year. Texas LIVE wishes you and your family a joyous Christmas and a happy new year. God bless Texas, Natalie Lacy Lange Senior Editor

Baking cookies at my mom’s house is a special Christmas tradition I look forward to each year. Pictured: My sister, Nicole, with her kids, Dean and Katie; my parents, John and Sherry Lacy, with my son, Tice

6 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |



athy Cole’s clients benefit from over two decades of her experience buying and selling private residences and some of the region’s most spectacular farms and ranches. During that time, she has amassed a record of success that includes 16 Top Producer titles, and the South Central Board of REALTORS® recognized Cathy as their first two-time “REALTOR® of the Year 1997 & 2005.” Energetic and enterprising, Cathy provides personalized service for buyers and sellers and finds the right property for each client. Her job is only complete when the buyer or seller is satisfied. Cathy treasures each client, but she is especially proud of the dozens of individuals and families who have trusted her to manage their real estate transactions multiple times. Cathy serves on the Political Involvement Council for Texas Association of Realtors and lobbies in Austin and in Washington DC. She is the only Certified Residential Specialist and Accredited Land Consultant in Washington Couny. Cathy also serves on the Land Use Committee, Professional Standards Committee, Government Affairs Committee and serves as as secretary for the local chapter of RLI. Cathy has also volunteered countless hours to charities to help ensure that Washington County and surrounding areas are a better place to live and work. • Member South Central Board of REALTORS® (SCBOR®) • Member Texas Association of REALTORS® (TAR®) • Member National Association of REALTORS® (NAR®) • REALTORS® Land Institute Accredited Land Consultant (ALC) 888.663.6461 979.836.3633 979.251.0603


Rachael Hall


Cynthia Beard

(Made with Love, p. 40) holds a PhD in musicology from the University of North Texas and lives in Denton. She writes about random curiosities, teaches piano lessons, is active with several non-profits, and enjoys world travel. She can get slightly obsessive about the environment, but she is blessed to have friends who keep her balanced. Read more by Cynthia at


Veronica Smith

Holly Beretto (Give the Taste of Texas,

Managing Editor

p.74) graduated from Franklin Pierce and St. Louis universities with degrees in communications and journalism. She currently works in marketing for Rice University’s George R. Brown School of Engineering and writes about food and wine, travel, and interesting personalities for local, regional, and national publications.

Lorraine Vogel Art Director

Clover and Rachel Carroll

(AllenFarm, Texas, p. 54) met and fell in love after discovering their mutual love for history, music, and Jesus (not necessarily in that order). They perform as Back At The Ranch (Western Swing and Jazz music), produce “The Ranch Road Show,” fi lm “Down the Road” segments, and enjoy traveling down the road together.

Karen Crabtree Lange

(Authentic Tamale Making, p. 68) hails from Brenham but is now at home in Georgetown where she works at an elementary school in addition to writing for a local magazine. She enjoys community volunteer work and loves, loves, loves politics! Her love of politics is second only to serving her country in the U.S. Air Force Reserves and being a mother to her three beautiful children.

W W W. H E R M A N N F U R N I T U R E . C O M

Located on the Historic Downtown square in Brenham, Hermann Furniture offers so much more than just fine furniture. As the oldest family owned and operated furniture store in Texas, the Hermann family, along with the knowledge, friendly staff assist clients in choosing and coordinating custom upholstery, draperies, rugs, floral arrangements, and accessories. With complimentary design seminars and personal service, the design process is simplified. For your convenience, Hermann Furniture also offers free delivery within 50 miles.

MON-FRI 9:00AM-5:30PM Sat 9:00am-5:00pm Sun 1:00pm-4:00Pm

Presented by the Blinn Players in cooperation with Delta Psi Omega and the United States Institute of Theatre Technology.

Join the misadventures of Eugene Morris Jerome, a young army recruit during WWII, as he goes through basic training in Biloxi, Mississippi.

Feb. 21 - 24, 2013 52715 Hwy 290 Hempstead, TX 77445 Phone/Fax: 979-826-6339

Dr. W. W. O’Donnell Performing Arts Center For more information, call the Blinn College Theatre Arts Program at 979-830-4269 For ticket reservations, call the Student Center Box Office at 979-830-4024

NEXT PRODUCTION • April 12-13, 2013 An Evening of Tennessee Williams

No balloons. No confetti. Just an amazing Texas truck. Great trucks. Great trucks Amazing prices. prices s. s l All year long. Get to your you local Toyota Toyota Dealer D Deale er for f a greatt d deal.

1515 Hwy 290 W - Brenham, Te TTexas xas • 888-625-3401 • 10 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |



Informing Connecting Texas

GROUNDS tra vel texa s

Brenham’s Christmas Stroll


>> TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 11


Stomping GROUNDS tra ve l texa s


renham’s historic downtown is the picture-perfect backdrop for a small town Christmas celebration. On Friday, November 30, the festivities begin at 5:30 with Girl Scouts singing and the lighting of the courthouse Christmas trees. Afterwards, downtown shops and restaurants stay open late while the streets line with spectators for the lighted parade. The theme this year is “Christmas Around the World,” and the floats will show how different countries celebrate Christmas. Kids, horses, antique cars, and community groups all participate in the parade. New this year is a Pyrenees dog group sure to steal the show: 20 dogs donning reindeer ears and LED lights. Santa will end the parade on a fire truck and stop at the courthouse gazebo to take pictures with the little ones. Before and after the procession, mingle in the streets and enjoy holiday shopping, the farmers market, hot cider, homemade goodies, and a gingerbread house tour at the downtown stores. For more entertainment and to celebrate the real meaning of Christmas, don’t miss the Stroll Through Bethlehem live nativity performances at Alamo Alley. The kids will love watching a “Movie on the Square” while parents visit and shop.

12 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

Saturday is also filled with festivities, including live music, street vendors, and shopping specials. • l l Downtown Brenham Christmas Stroll

November 30-December 1

Buck Fergeson


fURNISHINGS ~ hOME dECOR ~ bEDDING ~ kITCHEN cOWGIRL cORNER ~ bABY rOOM On The Square In Bellville TX 4 South Holland ST 1-800-585-1244 or 979-865-2167 Us On Facebook


GROUNDS tra ve l texa s

The Dead Sea Scrolls were hidden for 2000 years. Now is your chance to see them.


hey’re the greatest manuscript discovery of the 20th century—and they’re in Fort Worth for just six months. Dating back as far as 2,250 years, the Dead Sea Scrolls include thousands of fragments of some 300 biblical manuscripts representing every book in the Hebrew Bible (except the book of Esther) and are more than 1,000 years older than any previously known complete copies. Dead Sea Scrolls & the Bible is your once-in-a-lifetime chance to view 21 actual fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls—including 12 exhibited publicly for the first time in history. Come view the 2,000-year-old Dead Sea Scroll fragments— including biblical passages from Exodus, the Psalms and Daniel—along with other ancient artifacts and interactive kiosks that illuminate this archaeological find. You’ll walk through a replica of one of the original caves where the scrolls were found. You’ll check out actual excavation tools from the original site. And in the specially-designed scriptorium, you’ll have the chance to view the scrolls as scholars do now, as high-definition images that reveal even the thickness of the ink. Come for the chance to view rare artifacts—including a portion of a Gutenberg Bible and a 1611 King James Bible— and take the time to enjoy the shade of a giant, authentic Bedouin tent made of goat hair, or get your hands dirty in the simulated archaeological dig located just outside the exhibition. •

14 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

l l Dead Sea Scrolls & the Bible: Ancient Artifacts, Timeless Treasures

• Now through January 13, 2013 • Southwestern Seminary, Fort Worth • Learn more and purchase tickets at

In Historic Calvert

December 1 & 2, 2012 Presented by

ADDITIONAL ACTIVITIES Main Street offers dining and shopping

The Calvert Chamber of Commerce For Information: (979) 364-2559

“Light the Night” at Main Street Shops Saturday - 10:00am - Late! Sunday - 12:00pm - 5:00pm

Self-guided driving tour


Obtain a tour guide book from downtown shops - $5.00 each.

Tour Time: 1:00pm - 5:00pm Saturday and Sunday Ticket Price: $10.00 (allows entry to all sites on tour) Tickets my be purchased at any of the sites on tour or on Main street at:

Virginia Field Park

Larry C. Morris Law Office (Hospitality Center with complimentary hot cider and treats)

105 Pine

808 Pin Oak



909 E. Mitchell

603 E. Gregg

Holiday Music at Tour Stop 3 (808 Pin Oak) Saturday - The Renaissance Gypsies featuring harpist Martha Gay performing music of the season



The city of Calvert decorates the pavilion each year with a Christmas tree full of twinkling lights. The official lighting will be Saturday at 6:00pm w Tour Stop 1 - This “work in progress” Queen Anne cottage, built in 1883, features fish scale shingle work, stained glass and turned porch columns. The home is made of cypress and the original wood floors remain. Tour Stop 2 - This Queen Anne cottage was a “spec” house built at the turn of the 20th century. Features intricate detail of bead and spindle decoration, metal roof cresting & stained glass. Hand-made cookie cutter dough ornaments available for sale. Tour Stop 3 - This Victorian 2-story was built in 1896 and features original stained glass, tiled fireplaces and a Queen Anne staircase. The home also features intricate and ornate Victorian wallpaper. Holiday music site. Tour Stop 4 - Circa 1870 home built by J.H. Siddall. The staircase is from the former Calvert Grand Central Hotel.

404 E. Mitchell


207 E. Hanna


Tour Stop 5 - Built in 1909 by the American Woman’s League (AWL) as the first chapter house in Texas. Each plan included a terra-cotta logo, George J. Zolnay bias sculpture over the fireplace and Mission style furniture. Tour Stop 6 - This “airplane bungalow” was built in 1929. The one-and-a-half story design gives the suggestion of a cockpit with wings.


GROUNDS tra ve l texa s


he Yuletide festivities begin with the annual Christmas parade in downtown Cleburne on Nov. 30 and the lighting of over 3 million lights spanning 12 acres at Hulen Park, which will be lit each evening through New Year’s Eve. After the parade, bring the children to the park to have pictures taken with Santa and Mrs. Claus. A community choir representing area churches will provide live entertainment. Adding to the fun will be food and gift vendors, and kids of all ages will be able to blow the whistle on the historic 3417 Steam Engine. Children train rides around the park will be available on selected days.

16 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |


Whistle Stop Christmas

Experience the sights and sounds of a Christmas wonderland in Cleburne. Throughout the holiday season, both of Cleburne’s live theater groups will be presenting holiday plays. Carnegie Players production of the beloved classic Babes in Toyland comes to life at the Cleburne Conference Center. The Plaza Theatre Company is presenting A Christmas Carol in down-

town Cleburne. Other activities include Breakfast with Santa, Candlewalk Tour of Homes on Saturday, Dec. 1, and The Brazos Chamber Orchestra Christmas Concert on Dec. 16. • l l Visit for

a complete schedule of events.

Gift Items include fur trimmed gloves, handmade and hand-felted hats, scarves, sweaters, capes, stuffed animals, socks, head bands, throws... all made with alpaca fiber.

Bluebonnet Hills Alpaca Ranch

Today and Yesterday Antiques


in Downtown Brenham 101 West Alamo Street ~ Brenham, Texas Mon - Sat 11am - 5pm ~ Sun 1pm - 5pm

w w


WC Mercantile (yarn and roving only) in Downtown Navasota 201 E. Washington Ave ~ Navasota, Texas Wed - Sat 10am - 5pm ~ Sun Noon - 5pm


find us on f a ce b o o k



✸ City of Athens Department of Tourism There’s so much to see and do in Athens, you’ll want to make it a weekend! Begin your stay at the Athens Partnership Center where you can pick up visitor information on local attractions, restaurants, shopping opportunities and accommodations. For more information, or to request a free visitor’s guide, contact us at 888-294-2847 or visit us online at, 201 W. Corsicana St., Ste. 2.

✸ Holiday on the Square “Holiday on the Square” will be held on Saturday, December 1st. The evening will be filled with activities for the family, offering an arts and crafts activity along with a storyteller, face painting, puppeteer and music performance by local groups. There also will be a Holiday Market. Henderson County Court House Athens, Texas 903-675-7961,, 4:00-6:30 p.m.

18 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |



10 Reasons to Choose


1. Location, Location, Location

Just an hour drive from Dallas and 30 minutes from two major interstates, we are close enough to metropolitan areas but far enough away to enjoy an unsurpassed quality of life. An estimated 7.6 million people live and work within 100 miles of Athens. 2. Clean Air and Water

Athens and Henderson County are in complete compliance with all air quality standards. Supplied by the Athens Municipal Water Authority and Lake Athens, our city also offers some of the best water quality in Texas. >>

✸ Kathy’s Boutique Clothing, accessories and gift items for today’s woman is what you’ll find at Kathy’s Boutique. We’re located on the east side of the square in beautiful downtown Athens. Our team here is “at your service.” Kathy’s Boutique, 122 North Palestine Street, Athens, Texas 75751 903-677-5448,

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 19



Athens, deep in the heart of First State Bank.

FIRST STATE BANK Member FDIC • 903-676-1900 3. Pro-Business Environment

Athens wants to see our existing and new businesses grow and succeed. We are continually looking for ways to help business grow. The Citizens of Athens have adopted a special sales tax to fund an economic development program and provide incentives for expanding business. 4. Continued Growth

Henderson County is one of the fastest growing Micropolitan Counties in Texas. The city of Athens grew 12.5% in the last ten years with Henderson County as a whole growing 7.2% since 2000 U.S. Census. Athens is a recipient of the “Shining Star Award” as a hard working rural community, and as a “Certified Retirement Community” by the Texas Department of Agriculture. 5. Unlimited Recreation

✸ The Vault Urban style with southern hospitality. 117 E. Tyler Street, Athens, Texas 75751, 903-292-1730,, Tuesday-Friday: 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m., Saturday: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

✸ Lake Athens Marina Restaurant, Pavilion, Store and RV Park 5401 FM 2495, Athens, TX 75752 Restaurant: 903-677-8774, Office: 903-675-8686

Athens residents enjoy fishing, boating, kayaking and water skiing on local lakes and rivers, scuba diving, hunting, golf, camping, zip lines, nature trails, rodeo events and year-round festivals! Attractions include the Texas Freshwater Fisheries, East Texas Arboretum, Henderson County Performing Arts Center, and high school and college athletic events …just to name a few!


6. Educational Opportunities

From our local high schools to Trinity Valley Community College (TVCC), we have got you covered. Athens ISD and TVCC have developed the Pinnacle Early College High School program where our students can graduate from high school with an Associate of Arts degree from Trinity Valley Community College. In fact, Trinity Valley has been named one of the top community colleges in the country.


✸ Best Western Royal Mountain Inn & Suites We have a bed waiting for you! Guest will enjoy a free hot breakfast, free high speed Internet, Cable TV with HBO, and microwaves and refrigerators in every room. 1814 State Hwy 31, East Athens, Texas 75751, 903-292-1750,

✸ ✸ ✸ ✸ CALENDAR OF ATHENS ANNUAL EVENTS ✸ ✸ ✸ ✸ Henderson County PRCA Stampede Rodeo Come join us for rodeo acts from around the world, mechanical bull riding, petting zoo, food, and fun for the whole family. For more info on all activities contact the Athens Chamber of Commerce at 903-675-5181 or online at Fourth weekend in April.

East Texas Arboretum Annual Fall Festival & Black-eyed Pea Cook-off Enjoy arts and craft booths, art show, the Doggie Show, food venders, wagon rides, Scarecrow Trail, live music and, of course, black-eyed peas! For more info call 903-675-5630 or visit online at

CINCO De MAYO Celebration The Cinco De Mayo Celebration offers family fun games, dancing, music and food. For more info contact the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center at 903-677-2000 or log onto spdest/visitorcenters/tffc/.

Turkey Trot Held every Thanksgiving Day at the Cain Center. For more info contact the Athens Cain Center at 903-677-2000. To review more info on the Cain Center and events, log onto

Athens is the center of a retail trade area that includes 99,000 people with an average household income of $54,636. Athens continues to attract new retailers and development.

Farm and Ranch Tour The farm and ranch industry remains one of the largest sources of income in the Henderson County area. Each year, the Athens Chamber hosts the Farm & Ranch Tour which highlights the importance of the agricultural industry. More info at 903-675-5181 or online at

Athens is home to state-of-the-art facilities that provide business incubation, clean room manufacturing environments, mold making, extrusion and workforce training. When you couple the Bio-Tech Manufacturing Center with a growing medical and manufacturing cluster and a skilled workforce—you can see why we are a great place to do business!

Old Fiddler’s Contest & Reunion This nationally recognized fiddling contest and festivities begin at 9 am and continue until early evening followed by Athens famous Street Dance. Fun for the whole family including concession and novelty vendors and carnival rides for the kids! For more info contact Texas Fiddlers Association at 903-675-1859.

Holiday on the Square & Annual Christmas Parade The first Saturday in December you will enjoy Storytelling, visits with Santa Clause, a Holiday Market, the lighting of the Christmas Tree, followed by the annual lighted Christmas Parade. For more information about Holiday on the Square, contact 903-675-7691 and 888-294-2847 for the Christmas Parade.

7. Superior Medical Facilities

East Texas Medical Center provides state-of-the-art care along with nearly 60 physicians. Add in a wide range of other medical clinics and your health needs will be well-taken care of. 8. A Growing Retail Trade Area

9. Progressive Business Environment

10. Low Cost of Living

East Texas’ and Athens’ cost of living is well below the national norm. ACCRA conducts a nationwide survey and calculates the cost of living index each quarter for 314 areas in the United States. Athens’ cost of living is 9% lower than the U.S. average. Housing costs in Athens/ Henderson County are nearly 21% below the U.S. average.

Fireworks at the Fisheries Experience the largest July 4th fireworks show in East Texas. Admission is free after 4 pm and fireworks begin at dark. Contact the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center 903-676-2277. To find more events offered at the TFFC go to

Home for the Holidays This wonderful Holiday event showcases local businesses and what they have to offer shoppers during the Holiday Season. Enjoy hot apple cider while doing your Christmas Shopping, taking pictures with Santa and watching Holiday Demonstrations for the decorating season. For more information, contact the Chamber at 903-675-5181. December 8. Reindeer Games Enjoy this competitive shopping experience as you put your name into a drawing for every $25.00 you spend during the Holiday Season. The winner will receive a cruise, compliments of The Athens Chamber of Commerce and Sea The World Cruises. For more information, contact the Chamber at 903-675-5181.

✸ Trinity Valley Community College Trinity Valley Community College has been serving the needs of East Texas Students for more than 65 years. The college is conveniently located, with campuses in Athens, Kaufman, Palestine and Terrell. TVCC is home to excellent academic programs, nationally ranked sports teams and advanced job training facilities. Your future starts at The Valley, 100 Cardinal Drive, Athens, Texas 75751,



Carmine âœŞ

The Gateway to

22 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

H Fun Fact

The Carmine Bank was robbed in the 1930s by Bonnie and Clyde’s associates Raymond Hamilton and Gene O’Dare.

Antique Country Where to Shop:


he little town of Carmine is right on the beaten path. Located directly between Houston and Austin on Highway 290, Carmine (pronounced “kahr MEEN”) is the perfect mid-way stop for travelers and antique shoppers. “Many people stop here for a break and then they keep coming back when they see what we have to offer,” explains Vicki LaRue of the Economic Development Committee. “We have a beautiful shaded park for the kids or the pets to get some fresh air, and we have galleries, antique stores, and other treasure troves for shoppers.” When you pair that with good food and some of the friendliest folks you’ll ever meet, Carmine is an easy choice. Like much of Fayette County, Carmine has become a haven for artists, designers, >>

H D&T Antiques H Hour Glass Trading Co. H Jayne’s Place Antique Mall H Emily & Company H Hill Country Collectibles H Texas Trash & Treasures H Neese’s Antiques & Collectibles H Stoney Creek Antiques H Unique Antiques H West of Brazos Trading Co. H Burt’s Birdhouses H Carmine Feed & Fertilizer H Trendy Chicks Boutique H PJ Hornberger Folk Art Gallery

Where to Stay:

H Pecan Grove Inn H Sugar Hill B&B H Aunt Clara’s Guest House H Dixieland RV Park

Where to Eat:

H JW’s Steakhouse H Crooked Floor Café H 4G Convenience Store H Village Market

Worth a Visit:

H Texas Basketball Museum H Carmine Train Depot & Museum H Muehlbrad-Albers City Park

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 23



and antique dealers. With the best antique shows in the country sprawling over the surrounding area, Carmine touts itself as the “Gateway to the Antique Festival.” But Carmine’s antiques aren’t just on the roadside a few times each year—many of the historic buildings now house antique stores that are open year-round. With an eclectic blend that ranges from fine furniture and rare pieces, to the repurposed “junk” that is turned into unique art, there is something for everyone in search of treasures. • l l For more information, visit


The community takes pride in its history and is home to two museums: The Carmine Train Depot & Museum and the Texas Basketball Museum.

24 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |


P R O M O T I O N Henkel Hall, an 8,000-square-foot building located beside Haw Creek Church, will be available upon completion in late 2012. The Hall will include a full catering kitchen, an entertainment stage, and event parking.

 Round Top’s Henkel Square Market


Pie Haven Copper Shade Tree

ound Top is famous for antique festivals, but on any given weekend, a drive to this quaint central Texas town will treat visitors with a surprising amount of activity. The small town that could be a sleepy, don’t-blink-or-you’ll-missit point in the road has become a destination and center for arts, shopping, and diverse fun. At the heart of Round Top is the newly revived Henkel Square Market. Shaded by the canopy of live oak trees, this seven-acre parcel is dotted with historic German immigrant structures that now house retail and commercial enterprises. Visitors will find everything from fine art, antiques, clothing, jewelry, and home décor, to delicious pie and a hot cup of coffee. And there’s not a kitschy tee shirt in sight. In addition to businesses and Round Top’s Visitor Center, Henkel Square is also home to Haw Creek Church, a renovated 1880s structure that serves as a beautiful wedding venue. Conveniently located next to the church is an 8,000-square-foot event center set for completion this winter. •

l l Henkel Square Market

Beth Anderson Gallery

Haw Creek Church Hours Wed: Noon-4:00; Thurs-Sat: 10-5; Sun: 11-4 PHOTOGRAPHY BY NATALIE LACY LANGE

The mid-1800s Haw Creek Church is a spectacular wedding destination that is surrounded by live oak trees and beautiful landscaping. The church boasts a hand-stenciled ceiling, a pipe organ, and a working bell tower.

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 25

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26 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

Shop • Find Hobbies • Try New Things


LIVING bu s i nes s profil e

South Texas Tack >> TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 27



bu s i nes s p rofi l e

Owner and retail buyer for South Texas Tack Nancy Martin lets us in on the secrets of what’s hot this season. Cowgirl Style: Boots are a must-have—they are super versatile and can be worn with skirts, dresses, denim jeans, and skinny leggings. They come in a variety of colors and styles, and women have fun pairing boots with many different fashions. Miss Me and Cruel Girl are some of the most popular denims, while George Ross & Jerrod Lang are favorite tops and dresses. Cowboy Style: Cinch Jeans for the working cowboy and Petrol, Rock Revival, or True Religion jeans for the fashion forward. Flap pockets and detailed stitching are popular as well as Tin Haul shirts with pearl snaps. Top it off with a cowboy hat by Resistol or American Hat Company, and outerwear by Ariat and Cinch.


exas-inspired Western fashion is all the rage these days, and to nothing says “Texan” like the beautiful boots, sexy jeans, and flirty blouses found at South Texas Tack in Brenham. Thanks to the latest trends in country couture, you don’t have to be a nitty-gritty cowboy to dress the part. Brand names like Old Gringo, Lucchese, and Anderson Bean are favorites of city slickers and country girls alike. South Texas Tack offers one of the broadest selections of fashions and tack products in the state. With the largest hat selection

in South Central Texas, over 12,000 pairs of jeans, extensive lines of saddles and name-brand boots, there is something for everyone on your holiday shopping list. • l l Call to schedule an appointment for the Lucchese Custom

Classic Trunk Show, South Texas Tack in Brenham, 1-877-789-8225, photography by sarah Chelf

28 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |


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LIVING h o b by

G Star Trails

“My initial fascination with star trail photography was due to the streaking effect of the stars using long shutter speeds. As I learned about shutter speeds and its effect on motion in the image, I was enthralled with the idea of blurring or streaking WHAT: Photographer creates ‘Star Trails’ using long shutter speed MORE INFO:

parts of the image that moved during the exposure.”

~ Steven Walenta

rowing up under the Texas sky served as a source of inspiration for the now Santa Fe, NM resident Steven Walenta. His collection of photography entitled “Star Trails” began in Texas pastures, and has taken him on fascinating journeys throughout the United States. Steven explains, “Star trails are streaks produced on the film by stars as the Earth rotates during the night. Most photographs taken during the day have a shutter speed of around 1/60 of a second and therefore capture a very small period of time in the image. These star pictures were made at night with very long shutter speeds, anywhere from a few minutes to several hours in length and capture a long period of time in each picture. During this time, anything moving will appear as a blur or streak. The movement of the Earth causes the stars to streak. Anything stationary, such as rocks and trees, will not blur. The camera must not move during the exposure, and the use of a tripod is essential.” Steven says that he only shoots a few nights out of a year and therefore has to keep his film in a cool dry place—the refrigerator. “Since a roll of film may contain star pictures from two or three years ago, I really am surprised when I have the film processed,” he explains. “The therapeutic benefits I obtain from a night under the stars are a wonderful addendum to the images produced. When photographing star trails, I am almost always alone in a remote location. This peaceful environment enables me to slow down, relax, reflect on the past, and envision the future. At any given point in my life, whether good or bad, a visit with the night sky helps me put events into perspective, stabilizes my temperament, and reassures me of a brighter tomorrow.” • l l These images and many more are

available for purchase as archival prints in a variety of sizes. A photographic book with over 80 star trail images is also available. Contact Steven at for more information. PHOTOGRAPHY BY STEVEN WALENTA

30 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

The Earth rotates around an imaginary axis which, at it’s northern end, happens to point almost directly towards the star Polaris. Polaris, also called the North Star, is the point around which all the other stars appear to streak during long photographic exposures.

Steven W. Walenta is a photographer, digital-imaging specialist and photographic educator based in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He teaches at the Santa Fe Community College and the Santa Fe Photographic Workshops and is the owner of Steven W. Walenta Photography, LLC. Â

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 31

One unusually crisp fall afternoon, I began to realize how serious my husband was about his favorite spectator sport.



fter watching the first half of our alma mater’s game, I opted to take advantage of the cooler temperatures rather than sit through the repetitive halftime report. I was tending the modest starter-flowerbed that my husband had graciously dug for me that summer, and I had lost track of time when an explosion of panicstricken shouts streamed from the open windows. The wide bank of our dining room windows rattled as the pounding echoes of something heavy slamming into our pine floors silenced my garden work. The metal spade fell from my hand, and I tried to sprint to the front door, but my bare feet felt like cinderblocks. Visions of Harper sprawled across the floor in pain flooded my mind before I finally burst through the screen door. “Are you okay? What happened?” My voice trembled. “We fumbled—but it’s okay—we recovered it.” I stood in the doorway with my lower lip on the ground in disbelief. “Are you serious?” I


32 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

questioned incredulously. Relief and anger simultaneously replaced my fear. But he did not notice my concern, his eyes still glued to the television. With as much drama as I could muster, I stomped my dirty feet on the mat before marching over to the open windows. The iron weights ricocheted in the casings as I leaned over to slam each one shut. “What are you doing?” He finally looked away from the silver box during a commercial break and asked with confusion, “Why are you closing the windows? It feels good in here.” “Honey,” I explained, with disapproval in my voice, “I can hear every word you are saying—or yelling out there, and so can all the neighbors.” I could just imagine one of our neighbors calling 9-1-1.

Then he actually laughed, like it was all a joke. “Well, it is football season…” His justification ended with the commercial break, and the game swiftly stole his attention. I returned to my rookie garden and seethed over his silly obsession with a college football game. And to think I had been worried that there had been some kind of terrible accident when it was only a televised sporting event. As the afternoon faded, I was tired of digging in the dirt—and tired of pouting. I wondered who was winning. It had been an exciting game, and it was probably almost over. Maybe I had overreacted…Obviously, I had underestimated the importance of Longhorn football to my newlywed. Cringing at the thought of our Saturdays being a day of separ-

The Armchair Quarterback’s Family-Friendly Guide to

Football Season Bliss • Check your team’s schedule early, and mark your family’s calendar.

• Stock up on your family’s favorite treats when you purchase your own game day refreshments.

• Invest in a DVR (digital video recorder) so you can “pause” the action —just in case someone has to tell you something really important in the middle of a big play.

• Use halftime to head outdoors and actually throw a real football —or baseball, basketball, etc…

• Have a few alternative locations scoped out to watch your team if, for some reason, your favorite recliner is unavailable on game day.

• Find your team’s open week and plan a special night that has nothing to do with football.

ation for the next sixty years, I was almost ready to repent of my dramatic reaction. After all, I love football, too—I just have a difficult time sitting still for that many hours. I strained to hear sounds of celebration or frustration, but the sealed windows silenced any hint of the game’s outcome. Knowing it was time for me to apologize—to take one for the team, so to speak, I was prepared to admit how juvenile I had acted and explain that it had been born of concern. But to my pleasant surprise, his distraction with the game had extended to my behavior, and he acted oblivious as to why I was apologizing. I suspect he was taking one for the team that day, too. I guess that is part what makes a happy marriage. Now, football season is a time we both

look forward to, and even though he still gets into the games a bit more than me, I have felt that surge of adrenaline experienced by any dedicated armchair quarterback a time or two. However, the closed windows can no longer contain the deafening frenzy at our house, because football fever has even infected our 150-poung dog, who puts the rest of us to shame when it is time to make noise in celebration of a touchdown. Hopefully the neighbors have grown accustomed to the seasonal racket. •

Th e writer spends her free time between games documenting life with her husband and son. Read more at TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 33



b oo k rev i ew

Books for

Young Texans


s you Texas parents and grandparents search for appropriate Christmas gifts for the boys and girls, consider giving a gift of heritage. Texas is so big and so diverse that many children probably don’t realize all that it contains, and they may not be familiar with all its colorful history. Th is sampling of books will be sure to improve their knowledge, understanding, and Texas pride. •


For Pre-Schoolers

Little ones can learn to recognize the letters of the alphabet while also learning about the accomplishments, symbols, history, and wildlife of the Lone Star State with these two books: T is for Texas by Anne Bustard features beautiful color photographs to illustrate its ABC lesson; in L is for Lone Star, author Carol Crane uses rhymes, with lively illustrations by Alan Stacy. The boardbook 123 Texas (Kevin Somers) combines a counting lesson with bright and bold graphics of beloved Texas symbols. You and your pre-schooler can take a tour of Texas without leaving your cozy reading chair with one of these selections. Hello Texas (Hello America) (Christopher S. Jennings; David Walker illustrations) highlights the several distinctive regions of the state. This Is Texas (Miroslav Sasek) celebrates the major cities and the Western heritage of the state. Good Night Texas (Adam Gamble, Joe Veno illustrations) concentrates on the natural wonders, interesting places, and unique animals of Texas. Story time takes a Texas theme with Armadillo Rodeo, written and illustrated by Jan Brett. Young Bo takes off to follow an armadillo and winds up in a rodeo adventure. Both children and adults will get a laugh from Texas Mother Goose (David Davis; Sue Marshall Ward illustrations), with such Texas-themed adaptations of traditional rhymes as “The Old Cowboy Who Lived in a Boot” and “Cactus Jack Horner.”

34 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

For Lower Grades

This is the ideal age to introduce children to biographies, because they are realizing that someday they, too, will grow up to be “real people.” Sam Houston by Lisa Trumbauer is a particularly well-written account of Houston’s life from his childhood to his adult years. David Crockett: Creating a Legend (Mary Dodson Wade, Joy Fisher Hein illustrations) follows the hero from his beginnings in Tennessee to the Alamo. This biography is part of the Texas Heroes for Young Readers series, which includes accounts of other noteworthy Texans, such as Stephen F. Austin, Juan Seguin, and Jane Long. Michael R. Spradlin, in Texas Rangers: Legendary Lawmen (Roxie Munto illustrations), follows some of the dedicated men who were present for many of the most important events in Texas history. Children can learn more about the Battle of the Alamo through the entertaining story Susanna of the Alamo (Paul Bacon illustrations). Author John Jakes reports the fully researched fictionalized history of Susanna Dickerson, whose life was spared so that she could report the slaughter to Sam Houston. To learn more about the wildflowers of Texas and the life of the First Lady who loved them, choose Miss Lady Bird’s Wildflowers (Kathi Appelt; Joy Fisher Hein illustrations). For pure entertainment and laugh-out-loud humor with a Texas ranching backdrop, you can’t go wrong if you choose one of the many Hank the Cowdog mysteries by former cowboy and ranch manager John R. Erickson (illustrations by Gerald L. Holmes). Bubba, The Cowboy Prince by Helen Ketterman (James Warhola illustrations) gives us a humorous Texas version of “Cinderella,” complete with a fairy godcow. Finally, for a history lesson which includes some hands-on activity, choose The Story of the Alamo Coloring Book (Peter F. Copeland), with narrative content and historically accurate line drawings. The kids can learn while doing with this high-quality Dover Publishing product.

For Middle Grades

As children reach the middle grades, they very often come to be more decided as to their reading tastes. For those who prefer fiction, The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacquelyn Kelly is a good choice. This novel tells the story of a young girl growing up in 1899 in rural Texas who discovers the fascination of the scientific study of native plants. This one was a Newberry Honor Book. In the Shadow of the Alamo by Sherry Garfield features a 15-year-old boy conscripted into the Mexican army to fight the Texans and tells the story of the Alamo from a different viewpoint. Johnny Texas (Carol Hoff & Bob Meyers) recounts the adventures of a young boy from Germany who comes to Texas just in time for the Texas Revolution. Lisa Waller Rogers, in The Great Storm: The Hurricane Diary of J.T. King, Galveston, Texas, 1900, writes a fictive account of the largest natural disaster in American history, utilizing primary source research. Rogers has also written other fictional diaries about Texas as part of the Lone Star Journals series. For those children who have turned more toward non-fiction, The Texas Rangers: Men of Valor and Action (Mike Cox) offers Ranger stories and Ranger myth from a nationally recognized historian. Make Way for Sam Houston (Jean Fitz) is a fast moving and action packed biography, which is often surprisingly humorous. The life of Texas cowboy George Washington Saunders is profiled in Trail Fever: The Life of a Texas Cowboy (D.J. Lightfoot; John Bobbish illustrations). For a unique presentation of Texas history, we have Texas Tales Illustrated: The Revolution (Mike Kearly;

Mack White illustrations), which gives accurate historical accounts in a comic book format, complete with maps and copies of historical documents.

For Upper Grades

These novels all include a Texas setting, but in all, the setting is secondary to the story. Comfort (Carolee Dean) highlights the modern day problems of a teenage boy in a small Texas town. When Zachery Beaver Came to Town (Kimberly Willis Holt) is a multiple award winner about the acceptance of differences in a sleepy Texas town. The Sweetheart of Prosper County (Jill S. Alexander) is again set in small town Texas and includes praise for the 4-H and FFA programs. Samantha and the Cowboy (Lorraine Heath) is part of the Avon True Romance for Teens series and is, of course, a romance. This one features a girl who disguises herself as a boy to join a Texas cattle drive. Two non-fiction books are particularly noteworthy. In Where the Broken Heart Still Beats Carolyn Meyer mixes a bit of fiction into her factual account of Cynthia Ann Parker, the young Texas girl who was

captured by the Comanches and was returned unwillingly to her family 25 years later. The Lone Star State Divided: Texans and the Civil War (Merle Durham) tells us such little known facts as that more than 60,000 Texans fought in the War and that not all Texans supported the Confederacy. Many books which were written for an adult audience are accessible and appropriate for young people in the upper grades. Two such authors who will appeal to older teens will be Elmer Kelton and Janice Woods Windle. Kelton wrote over 30 historically accurate western novels with Texas settings, including nine Texas Ranger novels. Windle’s three novels are fictionalized accounts of her family members, all in the context of historical events in Texas. •

Merry Christmas, y’all.

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 35

The following is a short memory of Christmas long ago while visiting my grandparents in Fayetteville. My grandparents were both born and raised in Fayette county as first generation Texans. Their parents left Czechoslovakia in the late 1800s and disembarked in Galveston. They settled in Fayette county on 80 acres and this farm house is still in the family today.

Christmas Country in the

My grandparents’ house in Fayette County


t could have been like any other Sunday when Dad came into our room to wake us up. I was sure that midnight mass had just ended. Surely we couldn’t have been asleep for more than 30 minutes? Was he crazy? This was Christmas morning! I leaned down from the top bunk and stared down at the little guy. As if connected at birth, we simultaneously announced that Dad gets up too damn early AND he is certifiably crazy! Through sleep encrusted eyes, I groped for my glasses with the ever-present band of tape over the nosepiece. Once finding the saviors of sight, I noticed that it was still pitch black outside. Once again I felt compelled to voice an opinion about Dad’s sanity. Once the five of us were dressed, we were herded through the darkness like cattle destined for slaughter. It was times like these that I never complained about not getting a window seat. Brother and I assumed our normal positions in the back of the station wagon and burrowed under blankets like armadillos rooting for grubs. It was best to

36 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |


be as comfortable as possible because no one ever knew when this vehicle would stop again. And from the looks of the faces of all us kids, it was evident that no one was ever going to mention that they needed to pee. That was a definite taboo. This wagon never stopped for pee! We drove west into the night for what seemed like hours. This morning was no different from any of the other road trips we took, except that this time we seemed to be in slow motion. It was like we were towing the entire contents of the garage, and the wagon just did not have the muscle. Normally the ride in the back of the station wagon was intolerable. For some reason we never received the environmental comforts restricted to the chosen few who had seat belts. With this, I mean that we sweat like pigs in the summer and hang meat in the winter. Our personal sacrifice was soon forgotten as the sun began to splash its brilliance over the eastern landscape. As we continued to motor west, brother and I felt like we were in the front row of God’s

cinema. The crimson, orange, and yellow hues of the sunrise reminded us of those spinning paintings at the county fairs. I was hoping that the band of tape on my glasses would hold out, as I did not want to miss this kaleidoscope of colors. After several more switchbacks and turns, someone up front announced that they could see the old, haunted Brethren church. I said a quick prayer as we passed the church in hopes that the ghost who haunts the steeple had taken the day off for Christmas! Dad hit the county dirt road with the wagon like a crab scurrying over hot sand. Once he regained control from the fishtail, he accelerated even more. It always amazed me how he would change into some professional race car driver as soon as he approached these old bull rock roads of Fayette County. It was like this part of the world was his personal version of the brickyard in Indy. All told, A.J. Foyt he was not! Of course, in the back of the wagon, the pounding of bull rocks on the undercarriage

Ross (wearing red in the middle) with siblings enjoying Christmas on the farm.

of the station wagon was incessant. The constant barrage sounded like depth charges against the side of a submarine. This was one ship that brother and I would not go down with—I prayed that the Rambler could make just one more hill. It was over the last hill when she finally came into sight. Even with the untrained eye, one could see the white picket fence. As the Rambler continued to struggle, she spit, sputtered, and blew out a cloud of black smoke as we crested the last hill. We had made it; it was all down hill from here! There she stood, that little white farmhouse surrounded by its picket fence. She stood like a statue in a harbor. On this morning the frost on the ground created the illusion that we were about to embark onto some magical island. We rolled through the cattle guard at a speed that I could have sworn caused all four wheels to leave solid ground. As if sensing that its duty had been fulfilled and the final destination was at hand, the wagon slid to a stop within arms reach of the white picket fence. The wagon shook and rattled, and with a finale exhale of exhaust she fell silent. We were all overcome with a feeling of relief and euphoria. The Rambler had actually made it, and we arrived safely, and this was Christmas day! The doors of the Rambler flew open, and we all scrambled out as if being shot from a cannon. We were bounding up the steps of the front porch before the old gate could swing shut. The adrenaline pumping through our veins over the upcoming festivities were

further enhanced by our innate need for survival. Each quickly took note of the flock of chickens eagerly scratching in the yard. If the chickens were in the yard, the mean ol’ rooster couldn’t be far behind. Speed was a definite asset when visiting the farm. On entering the house, we were met by a combination of smells and temperature extremes. On days like today we would never venture into the back bedrooms because of the lack of heat. I was always sure that the reason there was no heat in the back rooms was because those massive feather bed comforters would somehow lose their effectiveness if exposed to temperatures above 40 degrees. This morning the front rooms were different, as the old gas heater in the dining room was putting out heat like a volcano. As if stuck in quicksand, we all stopped and gaped at the Christmas tree. It was just an ordinary Texas cedar tree that I was sure had been growing on the side of the road this past summer. Only today the branches were adorned with red bows and colored lights. Silver streamers of tinsel dangled from each branch glistening like shimmers of light. Strings of popcorn encircled the tree and the smell of the tree itself was intoxicating with its freshness. This was what Christmas was all about. Out of the kitchen the old man came lumbering like some peaceful giant. I

was forever amazed how he could hold all five grandkids at one time. His hug was vicious but damn well worth it. He would hug you so tight that his whiskers would cut your face even though he had just shaved that morning. He always smelled of sweat, Bay Rum after-shave, new plowed earth, and hay. Sometimes, if you really let yourself go, you could detect the faint smell of juicy fruit gum that was conveniently tucked away under the pearl snaps of his top pocket. One by one we untangled ourselves from his affection, no one wanting to leave the comfort first. We all then proceeded to tussle over whom got to wear his Stetson that we unceremoniously knocked off of his head. Usually I won out—but not today. Today I would let someone else wear the Stetson and be Roy Rogers. After all, it was Christmas! As if all of our commotion had awakened her from a nap, the old lady made her presence known. “Wash up and let’s eat!” she bellowed. It was on these rare occasions that we got to see the young woman that our grandpa fell in love with. Her hair was cut short and combed just right. The silver in her hair shimmered like the tinsel on the Christmas tree. This shimmer was further enhanced by the blue dress she wore. When she walked, it was as if she was aglow with silver and blue beams of light. She rarely smiled, as if it was not allowed or would be perceived as a sign of weakness. She was a young “Great Depression” wife, after all; she knew what hard times were really all about. But brother, when she did smile, like today, >>

“We always made the most of our time at the farm.”

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 37

it was like the sun rising. It seemed like she too was caught up in the Christmas spirit. Her hug was different from the old man. She would hug you in a more gentle fashion as if she was carrying a dozen eggs in her apron. She smelled of sweet perfume, baked bread, poppy seed kolaches, and roasting turkey. In fact, the entire kitchen smelled as if it were a bakery working overtime. A semblance of order was restored as we gathered around the table to enjoy our Christmas feast. Dad said grace like he always did as we all added our own silent prayers of thanks. The feeling of euphoria was almost narcotic as we grabbed our forks and knives. There was food enough for the early settlers of Plymouth Rock. Grandma made sure that her cupboard was left bare as we devoured turkey, ham, candied yams, stuffing, fresh green beans, cranberries, and homemade bread. As if Santa Claus were watching me, I reluctantly cleared my plate. One could never let his guard down when eating at either grandma’s house as they always placed parts of the turkey or chicken in the cornbread stuffing that wasn’t fit for man or beast to eat.

I said a quick prayer as we passed the church in hopes that the ghost who haunts the steeple had taken the day off for Christmas! With the meal out of the way, we gathered around the magnificent tree. The old man joined the five of us and we sang the traditional Christmas carols. As if on cue, brother and I would intentionally sing the wrong words, wrong verse, or an entirely different song. We didn’t come all this way to sing songs; we came for the presents! We were each handed one or two presents, neatly wrapped with our names scribbled so carefully on the paper. “From Santa” we all proudly read and wondered silently, “How did Santa know about this little farm?” As if we had never received gifts before, we all tore

38 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

The Minarick family made holiday trips to Fayette county to visit their grandparents.

into the paper packages like hogs tearing into their evening slop. Ribbon and paper fluttered in the air as we each attempted to throw our own trash higher than the other. As in previous years, we were always amazed that Santa would once again bring each grandkid a set of flannel pajamas. Once again the rage of the fashion world would be the newly sewn flannel pajamas with sliced apples adorning each set. I was further astonished that Santa could bring five identical sets. The pajamas were somehow expected year in and year out, but always appreciated. What I could never understand was why Santa would bring brother and I bottles of Avon after-shave? Although I liked the shapes of the different bottles, cars and boats, I was sure that I would not be shaving any time soon. The day was soon over, and the time was near to load the wagon with the spoils of the day. Dad jumped in the driver seat and keyed up the Rambler, and the engine roared to life like a bear awakened from its slumber. In single file we took turns hugging and kissing the old couple. We were each offered a piece of hard candy that resembled swirls of toothpaste from a jar that sat on top of the black and white Sylvania. I wasn’t sure about a piece of candy that looked like Crest but hey – it was candy! Somehow that faint smell of juicy fruit became a reality as we were each given our very own pack. We all stopped in the doorway to take in the sights, sounds, and smells of Christmas day one more time. The scents of the cedar tree, Bay Rum, kolaches, and perfume enveloped me in a blanket of security and love.

We all knew that we would be back, but the time would be different. It would be springtime and Easter to celebrate. There would be bluebonnets, buttercups, and Indian paintbrushes splattering their colors across the countryside like a spilled bucket of paint. The smell of newly plowed earth and mowed hay would tease our nostrils. Instead of Christmas carols we would be singing Czech favorites of “Jurida Polka” and “Red Wing Polka” while wearing out that old front porch swing. There would be chicks in the yard and kittens in the loft to spend hours on end with. Yes, we would be back. I held those last goodbye hugs tightly and felt the abrasions left behind by the old man’s whiskers. Brother and I assumed our natural position in the back of the station wagon. We all waved and screamed goodbye as once again Dad decided that his Rambler gave him a license to fly. This time, we left the cattle guard on two wheels and sped up the hill. As the bull rocks began their incessant staccato of pounding the wagon, I looked out the back window. With my hands and face pressed against the glass, I was overwhelmed by the events of the day. A tear welled up in my eye, and just when I thought I would surely burst in to tears, the wagon crested the last hill. Through the dust cloud the Rambler was now producing, I saw the little white farmhouse with its white picket fence. Like a fortress, the picket fence held inside its boundaries the love of two special people. As the Rambler made a final gasp to clear the hill, I pressed my hands against the glass… as if to touch the fence. •

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andmade gifts have always been a big part of my life, from the paper Christmas ornaments that I decorated in preschool to the jewelry that I enjoy sharing with loved ones today. I recall making presents for relatives when money was tight, and now my eco-conscious soul explores ways to “upcycle” objects that might otherwise be discarded. My latest invention involves cutting empty toilet paper rolls into tubes, covering them with pieces from old magazines, and attaching earring wires. The youth group from my church made some adorable designs that they will be selling at an alternative gift fair before Christmas. Even more than the gifts that I’ve created, some of my favorite treasures are handmade items that friends and family have made for me. My dearly departed mother loved to crochet, and shortly before she became too disabled to work with her hands, she crocheted a beautiful afghan that I proudly

display on my bed. It reminds me of the legacy of my ancestors who sewed quilts and dolls that have been passed down to me. Not all of these presents have to be heirlooms, but I believe that the thrifty spirit of previous generations has influenced those of us who are looking to cut back on expenses these days. Plus, sharing our talents with others is much more meaningful than a store-bought gift. With that in mind, I posted a question on Facebook last December to ask my friends about their favorite handmade gifts. The comments were both inspiring and moving as I learned about which possessions my friends consider to be most special. Here are some of the responses, along with insights from friends who have discussed this topic in greater depth with me. I hope that they spark your own creative spirit as you prepare for the holiday season.

Made with


My father made a big barn for

my model horses when I was 10 or so. It was and is magnificent, and I am in the process of making a spot for it in my office. The best gift ever. ~ Janelle W.

My son Andrew (assisted by his grand-mother) made me a “blanket” (piece of fabric with random buttons sewn on it). So adorable! ~ Caroline B.

I love giving edible gifts.

I know they won’t go to waste and that the time and effort I put into them will be more appreciated than if I went and bought something. ~ Kaeley B.

Recently, my daughter received

a handcrafted leather cross to hang on her saddle. It was given to her at the end of the rodeo play-day series this fall. The cross was a special gift for her because she had worked hard and made all her rodeo play-days. Every time she rides now she can look at the cross on her saddle and remember what a great time she had rodeoing this past season. It’s not fancy or embellished, it’s just a simple cross that brings a smile to her face. As parents who also ride and have been involved in rodeo, it’s really rewarding for my husband and I to see our daughter carry on the tradition and take pride in her accomplishments. The cross is a reminder for us also when we see it hanging from her saddle. ~ Courtney B.

One of my favorite holiday

gifts is the barbecue sauce my mother makes and puts into cute quart jars. It is my grandfather’s recipe. I love that she is preserving our family history and passing on this delicious sauce that reminds me of being a small child eating barbecue at my grandparents’ house. ~ Sadie L.

My mom made me a quilt when I got married, with fabric we chose together. It’s the thing I’d save in a fire. ~ Misti S.

During a recent visit to my

house, a dear friend surprised me with a lovely handmade gift. She had fashioned a bracelet from a section of a cardboard tube, which was embellished with decorative paper. What a neat idea to take something that was destined for the recycle bin and turn it into a piece of jewelry! I was very pleased to receive such a thoughtful and eco-friendly handmade gift. ~ Shannah A.

For several years a dear student of mine gave me some very special and unique handmade items that I still admire and display in my home to this day. Her parents owned their own pottery studio, and each year my student would pick out a favorite piece from her parents’ collection as a gift for me. The pieces are beautiful and seem even more special because I know who created them. ~ Lance S.

I like to sew cute baby items

for the local crisis pregnancy center. One of the volunteers told me that the women “fight” over who gets them! I like knowing that the women are getting something special for their babies. ~ Ivy H.

My mom made a scrapbook

recipe book of all my brother’s and my favorite foods from childhood. She also included pictures of us from when we were kids and some cool memories, stories, and sayings. I love it and every time I pull it out, I’m flooded with memories from my childhood. I can’t wait to share it with my girls someday when they are old enough to help me out in the kitchen! ~ Jennifer M.

The best gift of all was from

my paternal grandfather—I always wanted a hope chest. He spent the time and handmade me a hope chest. It took lots of long hours and hard work, sanding, gluing, and molding. He made it for me about 12 years ago. I still have it and use it to this day. I will always treasure it because it’s something I need and use, but most of all because of the love it was made with! ~ Mindy H.

I once received a box of

yummy sugar cookies, which spelled out “love,” “joy,” and “peace,” from a student. The card was so sweet, telling me why I deserved a box of love, joy, and peace, and how I brought those things into my students’ lives. I loved it, and I thought it was the most thoughtful gift I received that year. ~ Jen D.

I’m lucky to have creative people

in my life, thoughtful friends who are also artistic. I have a couple of pieces of jewelry—hand-crafted, assembled, and I believe even conceptually designed by a couple of different friends. Something about each piece is representative of something about me. These pieces each have a story. They are like sweet symbols of our relationship, and when I wear them, I feel that I’m adorned with friendship and care. ~ Heatherlyn H.

When my son was little,

he made a small frame and found a newspaper picture of my husband and me on our wedding day and put it in the frame. I cried like a baby, and it still sits on my dresser! ~ Amy S.

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Interiors  Gardening  Inspiration

Home &


D reaming of a White Christmas

Most Texans probably won’t have a snowy Christmas, but you can always make your own. For our snow scenes, we used various sized apothecary jars, baking soda for snow, and Christmas ornaments. PHOTO BY NATALIE LACY LANGE

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Look beyond the ordinary… you will find the essence of elegance! This property boasts a one-of-a-kind and a lavishly restored landmark home and entertainment buildings. Round Top Inn, centrally located four walking blocks to the town of Round Top, has been in continual business for over 20 years with a documented track record of continual and profitable growth. The rural but sophisticated property includes the Main House, 4 additional Guest Houses and a spacious Retreat Center with a Catering Kitchen. Several of the buildings are historical land marks, original to the site and date back to the 1860’s. The spacious living room in the Main House with German stenciled painted floor is a warm and cozy spot with the tall antique glassed windows. The open country kitchen, with big city ways provides a recipe for success. The efficient style, inviting warmth in this large kitchen is perfect for family and friends or visitors. The laundry and office nook are located from the back door toward the kitchen. An owner’s suite is downstairs and is located as a personal retreat.

2 more bedrooms with reading room are located upstairs in the Main House with 2 baths. The Guest Houses provide sumptuous bedrooms and tasteful antique decor. Situated separately for privacy, all overlooking patios and porches surrounded by a palette of flowers, towering live oak trees and beautifully groomed lawn. Designed for entertainment, family and friends will delight in a backyard big enough for croquette, badminton, volleyball or for the pool you can add for enjoyment. The property has a total of 8 bedrooms and 8 baths and 2 1/2 baths. Several Guest Houses have sitting areas and all have porches or decks with rocking chairs. The Inn has recently undergone an extensive renovation and professional remodeling. The 6 impeccably restored and appointed buildings rest on the lush, one acre property. The entire property is being sold as a “turnkey” Bed and Breakfast operation inclusive of furnishings and all good will. 888-663-6461 979-836-3633 979-251-0603

Home &


The House That Love Before Tami and Troy Glasco brightened the exterior of their 1880s farmhouse by adding a new roof and removing the vinyl siding to reveal the wood shiplap siding. With the help of old photos and pieces of the original railings provided by the previous owner, the Glascos recreated the front porch.

Rebuilt Tami and Troy Glasco restored a forgotten Texas farmhouse to a warm family home. STORY AND PHOTOS BY NATALIE LACY LANGE


any people dream of buying an old farm and living an idyllic country life, but few ever have the opportunity to actually do it. In 2004, Troy and Tami Glasco decided to leave their 3,800-square-foot home in an established neighborhood for a 120-year-old farmhouse with floors that they could literally fall through. “A lot of our friends and family thought we were crazy, but we had already fallen in love with the place,” Tami smiles as she recalls their decision to make a lifestyle change that would affect their entire family. “It was definitely a leap of faith, but God is good, and we trusted him through it all.” Troy had always dreamed of owning land, and with three almost-grown >>

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Before daughters, the couple was ready for their next chapter. “I could just picture Troy on his dad’s old tractor while grandkids were playing in the yard,” Tami says. The Glascos quickly made an offer on the 52-acre property just south of Brenham, Texas. Although the aging homestead could have easily been torn down, the Glascos did not consider that an option. The day they closed on the property, the Glasco family went to work. “We had a commercial dumpster on one side of the house, and we left the windows open to toss out anything that would fit,” Troy remembers. “It was dirty work, but the demolition was kind-of like a treasure hunt,” Tami describes. “We

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found the original wood behind the dark paneling and dropped ceilings.” Some of their other finds included an original transom window, the gingerbread porch railings, and upstairs windows that had been covered with vinyl siding. At the time they purchased the property, Tami and Troy each owned and ran a successful business in the community. Their ingenuity and familiarity with hard work proved to be invaluable assets as they carried out their vision. With over twenty years of landscape experience, Troy was undaunted by the overgrown and neglected vegetation. “The yard and the house had good bones, so we knew they could be brought back to life,” Troy says. Tami relied on creativity and an eye for design that had been honed by years in her retail business to focus her energy on the house. “There were so many decisions that we had to make on a daily basis and it

Gold carpet, dark wood paneling, and dropped ceilings were removed to reveal the original wood. Neutral shades of green and white throughout the house are complimented by the warm pine floors. Widened doorways and new moldings unify the rooms.

“When you put so much of yourself into something, it becomes really personal”

Before was easy to get overwhelmed, but we learned to be patient and flexible.” And flexible they were. In fact, the Glascos’ original plan was to live in the restored home only temporarily. Eventually they intended to build a new home towards the back of the property and use the farmhouse as a bed and breakfast, but as the family gave their time and energy to the house, it began to feel like home. “When you put so much of yourself into something, it becomes really personal,” Tami explains. >> The kitchen cabinets were given a facelift with new paint and tumbled-stone tile countertops. The wall between the old kitchen and utility room was removed to add a breakfast area and additional seating. A new island and a refurbished farm sink were carefully added to blend with the original details.

Starting with 1,600 square feet, the Glascos decided to take advantage of the attic for extra square footage. The additional 700 square feet included a large closet, another bedroom, and a bathroom. Downstairs, the wall between the kitchen and utility was removed to make a larger kitchen with a breakfast area. Opening up that space and adding French doors allowed more natural light to pour into the kitchen. The doorways between the kitchen, dining, and living rooms were also widened to open the rooms up and unify the space. A small and deteriorating enclosed-porch was transformed into a utility room. While the house was finally blossoming, there were many times that were not so sweet. “After what we thought was a great start, we ended up having a pretty bad experience with our contractor/carpenter,” Troy says. The Glasco family ended up doing all the finish-work, and Tami’s brother came in to help finish the carpentry. Tami recalls, “I literally caulked the wood walls until my fingers were raw-if one started to bleed, I would use another one.” But the worst mishap was in the kitchen. When Tami was standing on the cabinets to work on the walls

above, she stepped onto the sink. “Apparently, it had never been bolted in, so I fell right through with the sink. I ended up breaking my toe.” But it did not slow her down. In fact, the Glasco family has done anything but slow down. After completing the initial renovation and moving in 2005, the Glascos focused on the outside. “In 2006 we added a garage/carport and changed the front entrance to the property,” Troy explains. They also added a back porch and a terrace to enjoy family cook-outs or a soak in the spa. Then in 2007, with their oldest daughter’s wedding and their youngest daughter’s graduation only months away, Tami and Troy decided it was time to carry out part of


Left, middle: In May 2007 a master suite was added, so the former master bedroom became the guest bedroom. With windows on three sides, the guest bedroom is flooded with warm natural light. Right, top: Nestled between the dining room windows, the old butcher’s block from Troy’s parents’ Waller County grocery store has always been a treasured piece of family history. Above and left: Follow the stone path, and cross a wooden bridge to get to the new Bed & Breakfast. Large pecan trees offer shade and privacy to enjoy the scenic Texas landscape. Inside, the cozy cottage décor will take you to a simpler time, but modern amenities add comfort and relaxation.

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In 2011 the Glascos built a studio that will eventually serve as a pool house. In the meantime, it has served as a venue for hosting many gatherings for family and friends, including their daughter Haley’s wedding reception.

l l See more of the Glascos’ bed &

breakfast at

50 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

The dilapidated barn was saved and renovated just in time to serve as the backdrop for their daughter Paige’s 2009 wedding reception.

Photo by Paige Meyer

the original plan. They decided to add a guest cottage that would also serve as a bed and breakfast. “We will need the space for family visits, and a single cottage is a great way for us to get started in the bed and breakfast business. The timing was a bit stressful, but we knew it would be great if we could have it in time for Tori’s wedding,” Tami says. Just in case they did not have enough to keep themselves busy, the couple simultaneously undertook a second major project— the addition of a master suite. Troy drew the plans that would add another 700 square feet to the home and extend the back porch across the addition. “We learned a lot with the first round—this time we did the contracting ourselves, and it went as smoothly as possible,” Troy says. It might seem like the Glascos stay too busy to enjoy the country life, but they savor daily life at their farmhouse retreat. “Gardening is one of the many things that I enjoy here that I had never really made time for when we lived in town,” Tami says. Whether they are taking a long walk or watching whitetail deer from their back porch, Tami and Troy love life on the farm. •

“We learned a lot along the way, and we made some mistakes, but it was worth all the effort,” Tami says. “We love it here. It’s relaxing and peaceful, and it just feels like home.”

The back porch that consisted of a simple awning and concrete steps was transformed to an expansive living space that can be used for entertaining or to simply enjoy a romantic evening sunset. Troy, who owns a successful landscape company, designed and landscaped the outdoor living spaces in phases as time and budget allowed.

Home &


Rooting Plants — It’s in the Bag! BY MICHAEL SHOUP Owner, Antique Rose Emporium, Independence, TX


hether we are offered cuttings from a friend’s plant, find interesting varieties while traveling, or just want to increase numbers of our exiting plants, successful rooting of plants may be a daunting task. Here is a method of rooting cuttings that rarely fails us—The Zip-Lock Bag Method, causally know around here as the “Zip it and Clip it” method. You will only need: One gallon size Zip Lock baggies, all-purpose potting soil, Perlite, rooting hormone (optional). As a collector, grower, and distributor of many old, rare, or un-named varieties of plants, I have been exposed to dozens of methods of rooting cuttings that homeowners and nurserymen have invented in order to duplicate their plants. They range from large greenhouses with automated mist systems to a simple upside-down mason jar. One of the best methods, and ironically the easiest, is the use of a clear zip lock plastic baggie. To start, the bottom of the baggie should be filled with two inches of moist potting soil and coarse Perlite mixed in a one-to-one ratio. Perlite acts as an aerator preventing the potting soil from compaction

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and over saturation of water. Air is a very important component of successful root formation. Holes (1/4-inch wide) are made in each bottom corner of the bag to allow for excess water to drain. Water is added only to create a moist, not wet, media. Properly moist media will NOT drip if squeezed in your fist. (The greatest percentage of rooting failure I have seen, has always been due to water soaked media not allowing good air exchange with the emerging roots from the cuttings.) You can place up to ten three-inch cuttings in each baggie. Stem cuttings that are three to four inches long containing two to three leaves usually root well. Remove only the bottom leaf to allow the stem to easily enter the media. You can dip your cuttings into rooting hormone containing IBA to aid in the speed and percentage of rooting. I have found that most cuttings will still root without it. Remember, plant cuttings have a short storage life. They can be refrigerated in moist paper towels, wrapped in plastic, and preserved for five to six days without affecting rooting. However, if left in open

air, the cuttings will desiccate within hours. Before you stick your cuttings, be sure and store them properly. Placement of the baggie while roots develop is important. Direct sunlight can cook the un-rooted plants in the sealed baggie. Too little light won’t provide the energy the cuttings need to form roots. I have found that a northeast or northwest facing window sill offers excellent light for rooting. East or west facing windows are good as well, as long as some relief from the direct sun is offered. Shaded greenhouses are ideal or shade from under trees work well, provided the temperatures aren’t too cold. Optimum temperatures for rooting are from 55 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. To maintain the 100% humidity that the baggie environment provides, you may need to add up to two tablespoons of water every third or fourth day. Condensation on the baggie’s inside walls is a good sign that this “terrarium environment” is being maintained. You can actually see roots emerging and later touching the bag’s sides in three to five weeks. In five to seven weeks, the baggie can be opened from the top to start weaning the cuttings from their 100% humid environment. You will need to water more often as the newly rooted cuttings acclimate. In 10 to 18 weeks, rooted cuttings can be planted into small pots with regular potting soil or into protected areas of the garden. This method of rooting works with many types of plants. Try perennials like salvias, penstemon and dianthus. They are easy and fast to root. Shrubs like Spirea, Ligustrum, roses, and Indian Hawthorn will root well under this system but Hollies, Photinia, and Nandina are harder and slower to root. I have also found that some cuttings without leaves or even dormant hardwood cuttings will root but at a lower percentage and at a slower pace. So when you want to get a start from that plant you always wanted, remember, success is in the bag! • Mike Shoup is owner of Th e Antique Rose Emporium, a Texas nursery dedicated to the reintroduction of versatile antique garden plants.


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TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 53

Down the


Cotton is brought up to the gin by mules on Terrell Farms.



ust across the Brazos River on the north side of Washington County lies Allenfarm, Texas, a farming community that grew out of the rich river bottom soil. Although over a century has passed since the original colonists settled there, the geography that drew the first settlers still makes it an important place for agriculture today.

Allenfarm community lies at the junction of FM 159 and the Burlington Santa Fe Railroad.

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Stories of the past come alive at the end of Highway 159 as relics of history stand frozen in time. Two families who have lived in Allenfarm through much of its ebb and flow are the Moores and the Terrells. Both families have worked the land for generations. Bill Terrell Jr., head of Terrell Farms, is intimately familiar with the history and workings of Allenfarm. His family has been working the land since 1907; five generations of Terrells have made their living on the property. Terrell has honored the legacy of his ancestors by restoring several of the buildings on the property. The Terrell Farm’s general store closed its doors on January 1, 1990, but is still

neatly kept. The inside of the old store is virtually an agricultural museum, its walls lined with relics from the past, such as mule bits, cotton scales, seed spreaders, and branding irons. The original cash register, dated at about 1915, still sits at its place on the counter, as if waiting to ring up the next soda. Terrell’s current project is the old depot that served Allenfarm for years; it was built in 1883. “This wood is 130 years old, and it looks like it did the day it was cut from the tree—fresh and solid,” remarks Terrell. The baggage room of the depot holds fascinating stories. Railroad workers had a custom of signing their names with the date inside the walls, and the baggage room is covered with signatures, pictures, and bits of history. A little understanding of their

shorthand is helpful for reading inscriptions like E.S. Woolworth, Ralf. Agt Nov. 20, 1899. “Ralf. Agt.” stands for Railroad Freight Agent. There are dates on the walls as early as 1884. Terrell points to an inscription painted in blue that stands out: T.B. KellyAgt. 9-10-28 to 2-1-29. “He was the last freight agent to work here, the depot closed February 1, 1929.” Terrell’s office holds black-and-white photos and paintings of the past. As Terrell relates each of the stories depicted, he pauses for a moment, “…Most of these people are gone now—sure do miss ‘em.” He fondly recalls characters such as Terrell Farms’ blacksmith, a man by the name of Frank Green. When Green was a teenager, he was in a train accident that required his leg to be amputated. When he returned to Terrell Farms, they gave him employment as a

Above: Thomas Moore stands in front of the “Old Gin.” Above, right: Inside the Moore’s “Old Gin.” Below: Cotton is weighed in the field with a tripod and scale.

blacksmith where his wooden leg did not deter him. A tour of Terrell Farms depicts the story of a close-knit community where the role of each person was dependent on another. Inside the blacksmith shop, Terrell points to a hole dug into the dirt floor and says there was always a fire built in it. The men would come to the shop in the morning to sit around the fire and swap stories before work. It’s not difficult to visualize the way life must have been when Terrell Farms was an active community. The storekeeper’s home, foreman’s house, general store, blacksmith shop, mule barns, and several sharecropper houses all stand within walking distance of

one another. The old buildings, tidily kept up, now put to different uses, are an accurate picture of Terrell Farms itself. Changing with the times also meant making use of labor as it was available, and even convicts and prisoners were sometimes part of the labor force on the farm. During WWII, a German prisoner-of-war camp was headquartered in Navasota, and prisoners were brought out to Allenfarm to work the fields during the day. Thomas Moore, son of Tom J. Moore, related an incident that happened while the POWs were working there. The German captives were discussing a scheme to overthrow their guards and escape, but they missed a key factor—the >>

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 55


men on watch, with their German heritage, understood every word. Needless to say, the plot was foiled. Living and working on the farm with no means of transportation meant people had to create their own entertainment. This way of life gave birth to a unique Texas version of the country blues. Perhaps most notable among the employees of Tom J. Moore was the legendary blues singer, Lightnin’ Hopkins, who wrote about living and working on the river bottom at Allenfarm. When a record label from California heard Lightnin’ Hopkins music, they were so enamored with the original blues sound that the producer and a friend set out to Texas to find him. Although Lightnin’ had already left town by the time the two reached Texas, their trip was not made in vain. Since Tom J. Moore was mentioned in Lightnin’s songs,

Above: Bill Terrell Jr, a fifth generation farmer, stands at Terrell Farms’ headquarters. Below: Picking cotton on Allenfarm

56 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

they drove straight to Navasota and stopped at the first feed store in town to ask for Mr. Moore. When asked if he had any guitar pickers among his employees, Tom Moore directed them to a man by the name of Mance Lipscomb, who was out cutting grass on a tractor by the highway. Lipscomb was picked up by the label and went on to become a Country Blues music icon. Relics of the past like the old cotton gin still dot the community, such as the enormous bells that heralded workers to and from the fields each day. George Harris, an employee of the Moores, was the keeper of one of those bells. As long as Thomas Moore can remember, Harris rang the bell at 5:30 a.m., 7:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 1:00 p.m., and 6:00 p.m. When he was too old to walk on his own, he would come to the bell on his walker, undeterred by age. Harris recently passed away, but his resolute hold on tradition made him an icon. Moore quietly recalls, “Yeah, he was a fixture on the place, probably the last one to move off.” George Harris was of a generation that upheld standards of hard work and discipline.

“…we’re still tied to the land, we just used to touch it more than we do now.” Allenfarm community still represents those same values. Little has changed on the landscape of Allenfarm. Today, as you wind down FM 159 through the community, the long lines of crops still skip past your window. For all the advances in science and technology, farmers are still dependent on God’s providence for the rain and the sunshine. Tell-tale wisps of cotton still line the sides of the road when harvest time comes, a reminder to drivers passing through that we are still tied to the land, we just used to touch it more than we do now. Like the community of Allenfarm, we would do well to keep a healthy respect for the past as we look toward the future. • Down the Road is a production of The Ranch Road Show, a touring production where music, hometown life and the arts meet at the rural crossroads.

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TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 57

Hunting Lessons

1what hunting with my dad really taught me BY NATALIE LACY LANGE

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he days are ending earlier, and the leaves are beginning to blanket the earth. In Texas that means one thing: it is time for hunting season. For many people, including myself, hunting is a family affair. Some of my favorite childhood memories with my dad revolve around hunting and everything that it entails. I remember the day that I went on my first deer hunt with my dad—there wasn’t a happier five-year-old in the world. We were staying at my grandparents’ house, and we woke up around 5:00 a.m. so we could be in the pasture before the sun came up. My mother woke up early to get us ready; she made sure we each had some lemon drops and an apple to snack on and a canteen of water. Bundled up and ready to face the cold November morning, we drove several miles from the house to the pasture where we would hunt. As we passed the abandoned stone and wood structure that was part of the old homestead, my dad reminded me of the rules of hunting. After safety, the most important rule was to stay quiet—the West Texas wind could carry any noise, and the deer definitely had big ears to hear with. I was so proud to be included in the hunt, and I was determined to prove that I was ready. I cautiously closed my car door, just like my dad did. My small tennis-shoe clad feet followed the giant steps of my father. I was pretty sure my steps were quieter than his. It was a short trek up to the blind where our hunt would begin. We carefully climbed in, and waited for the sun to come up. Nothing would have been better than spotting a deer first, and I just knew I would. We peeled our eyes over the cedar-covered landscape as the orange light of sunrise wrapped around us, but the deer did not come. After waiting and watching for a couple of hours, all we had seen were cattle. My dad told me that the deer usually wouldn’t want to graze with the livestock, so he doubted we were going to have any luck in the stand. He wanted to climb to the other side of the mountain, and I assured him I was up for it. My chest swelled as I held my dad’s gun for him while he climbed over the fence. The

mountain was very rocky, and my dad chose his path carefully. He constantly turned back to check on me as we headed to the top. The hard part was continuing to look for white-tails while simultaneously concentrating on the safety of the path that Daddy’s enormous leather boots promised. We finally made it over the ridge and stopped to scope it out. I could see for miles up there, and it felt like the top of the world. Suddenly, I saw movement. It must have been close to 300 yards away, but it appeared a gold-ish color, and its movements were smooth along the mountain side. I quickly got my dad’s attention and tried to describe what I saw. I thought it was a mountain lion because it was too big for a bobcat. My heart reverberated in my chest so loudly I thought it could be heard—a mountain lion was even more exciting than a stately buck! But as swiftly as it had appeared, the animal was gone, and I was left with a lasting impression. Despite the fact that mountain lions are fairly rare in that area, my dad shared in my excitement and never implied that I might not have seen what I thought I saw.

Some of my favorite childhood memories with my dad revolve around hunting and everything that it entails.

Then, moments later, it happened—I ruined everything. I was so sure I would see the cat again, I must not have been paying close enough attention to where I was stepping. My foot stumbled, and I reactively put my hands out to catch myself. Unfortunately, although I didn’t roll down the mountain, one hand took the brunt of my weight in a prickly cactus. As hard as I tried not to, I cried as my dad sat down and helped me pull out the thorns. Even though the pain was awful, I was crying more because I had fallen like a little child, not a real hunter. My dad assured me that he had fallen many times and reminded me of when he came home from a recent hunt with his ankle bruised and swollen. Within a few minutes, we were on our way back to my grandparents’ house for

lunch. Although my hand was throbbing, and we needed tweezers to retrieve the remaining thorns, I couldn’t wait to tell the rest of the family all the details of the morning hunt. That day I had learned an important lesson in hunting: sometimes the adventure of the quest can be as exciting as a successful ending. It was a lesson than has been reinforced numerous times in the years since, in everyday life as much as hunting. In fact, the following year, I spotted a fawn caught in the fence before we even started the hunt (I think it was then that I earned the nick-name “Eagle-Eye” from my father). A few years later, I killed my first buck. As exciting as that hunt and many previous and later hunts were, what really stands out to me the most are the bonds that were strengthened as we hunted together. Over twenty years after that first hunt, I recently had the amazing experience of accompanying my parents to Africa. That familiar anticipation and preparation for the adventure of a stalk has not weakened over the years—if anything it has grown, because I appreciate everything the hunt really means to both my dad and myself. My dad’s desire to share his passion with me and my chance to experience it with him has created a special bond. On Africa’s sandy soil, I quietly followed my father’s steps once again. With an appreciation that age has a funny way of providing, I thought about that cold November morning when I was five, and I realized how much hunting has taught me about a father’s love. I’ve never met a man more serious about hunting, but he was much more of a daddy than a hunter when he took me on that first hunt. He showed his confidence in me just by taking me with him; he refused to crush my spirit—even though many dads might have at least voiced a little doubt that their child saw a mountain lion; and he picked me up with tenderness and reassurance when I fell on the side of that mountain. I admire how my dad showed his endless fatherly love for me that day, and although I have not become a passionate hunter, I will always love what hunting season means to me because of him. •

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 59

Clearing The


eep in the hearts of Texans are long-standing values and principles that remain true today. At the center of those values stands the belief in strong, healthy marriages, resulting in thriving families and communities. Although the value of marriage is still found at the Texas core, the common struggles found in every marriage can leave couples feeling their relationship was meant for so much more. After seeing not only the physical pain but also the pain that comes from broken marriages in the lives of their patients, William and Margit Riley, both physicians, founded The Clearing, a non-profit organization dedicated to healing, restoring, and refreshing marriages. Located in the serene Texas countryside at the Jordan Ranch in Schulenburg, couples will find themselves participating in the life-changing work of The Clearing Marriage Intensive Retreat. Greeted by a compassionate host couple, husbands and wives can escape life’s everyday concerns as

they take in the breath-taking views, enjoy the grand yet intimate setting of the ranch’s facilities, refresh themselves in the refuge of the pool or Jacuzzi, savor five-star gourmet meals, or relax in the privacy of their bedroom, all the while restoring their relationship through the encouragement and counsel of compassionate, Christcentered therapists. Over thirty hours of counseling are offered in four impactful days as core issues are attended to and couples discover the purposeful, covenant marriage God intended for them. Each Marriage Intensive is led by professional licensed therapists equipped with years of training and experience. Each therapist works to deliver an in-depth counseling retreat to gently bring couples to a place of renewed hope, direction, and S P E C I A L

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intimacy. Couples may choose between a private, two-day intensive and the four-day group intensive for up to five couples and two therapists. The group intensive provides a safe, caring environment where couples can learn from each other as they discover they are not alone. Contact The Clearing today for more details of the Marriage Intensive experience. Program Director, Deborah Kristen, can assist you with your questions and concerns. God has a joy-filled purpose for every marriage. Take the step to let Him touch your hearts and transform your marriage into the thriving relationship it was meant to be. • l l The Clearing


The Clearing Phone: 979-885-8121

Relationships Renewed Refreshed Restored

HEAR me, I'm tired of talking AT each other. Why doesn't he LISTEN? He doesn't He doesn't even

even seem to care anymore. I feel so

ALONE. I just need to sort this out . I wish the world would stop and give me

TIME TO THINK. The Clearing is a non-profit organization dedicated to healing, restoring, and refreshing marriages. Providing an alternative to traditional counseling, The Clearing offers Marriage Intensive Retreats to restore love, trust and hope to couples, and ultimately to their families for generations to come. Through these intensive retreats, countless couples have discovered fresh intimacy and purpose as they embark together on new, rekindled journeys. Located in the serene Texas countryside at the Jordan Ranch in Schulenburg, couples will find themselves participating in the life-changing work of The Clearing Marriage Intensive. Greeted by a compassionate host couple, husbands and wives can escape life’s everyday concerns as they take in the breath-taking views, enjoy the grand yet intimate setting of the ranch’s facilities, refresh themselves in the refuge of the pool or Jacuzzi, savor 5-star gourmet meals, or relax in the privacy of their bedroom, all the while restoring their relationship through the encouragement and counsel of highly trained and experienced professional, Christ-centered therapists. Every marriage can benefit from and be upgraded by a periodic deep audit. Over thirty hours of counseling are offered in four impactful days as core issues are attended to and couples discover the purposeful, covenant marriage God intended for them. Info:, Phone 979-885-8121.

“We had tried everything and had almost given up. I literally had divorce papers in my purse, and our 4 day intensive saved our marriage.”

She misunderstands everything I say say. I'm tired of being

hounded. I not sure

she even loves me anymore. The

pressure is getting to me .I wish I could just hideaway somewhere to think this through- Make some decisions. I just need





LaVerne Krumrey, Tina Newman, and Dottie Herrmann

Every October, we’re reminded of how blessed we are to live in Washington County. The color that helps us remember each year is pink.

Bosom Buddies member Melanie Andrejczak

Paint the Town


Brenham High School Cub Mascot


A The event’s beverages were sponsored by Mike Hopkins Distributing, Windy Winery, Pleasant Hill Winery, and Saddlehorn Winery.

Gracie Slattery

Sarah and Barbara McIntyre

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s we looked out over the wonderful crowd that gathered October 25th at Brenham Clinic for the annual “Paint the Town Pink” celebration, we saw plenty of pink. But behind the pink, we saw faces of all different colors. We saw grandparents and grandchildren. We saw older couples and young couples. We saw elected officials, blue-collar workers, teachers, small business owners, and housewives, all coming together for one cause: breast cancer prevention. The diversity of those present was truly amazing. But then again, it’s really no secret why so many people from so many different walks of life join us each year for this cause. It’s because breast cancer affects us all. Dr. Jeff Stoltenberg probably said it best when he said, “If you haven’t yet been touched by this horrible disease, at some point in your life, you probably will.” While that is a scary prediction, good physicians always tell you the truth. Great

physicians (like Dr. Stoltenberg) do more than just tell you the truth—they also join you in battle. And to us, that’s exactly what this is—a battle. Our enemy is breast cancer, and the war we wage is one of life or death. If you don’t believe us, just ask a breast cancer survivor or family member of a loved one lost to the disease. You can find them every year at our Paint the Town Pink event. Like countless other communities across our great nation, Washington County has lost many wonderful people to breast cancer. But what sets us apart from others is our unity, devotion, and passion for finding a cure. That’s because we don’t just wear pink —we live it. It stands for who we are, where we’ve been, who we’ve lost, and the lives yet to be saved. Pink isn’t just the shade of a ribbon we put on and take off, it’s the color of our battle flag. And in Washington County, we never back down from a fight and never give up until we win. •

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 63

*Appointments are on a first-come, first-served basis. A physician order is required. All mammogram reports will be sent to the patient’s physician and follow-ups are the responsibility of the patient.

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It is the unique combination of professional skill, shared vision and compassion of the Thrive team that has kept Thrive Home Health Care, Inc at the forefront of service providers in the Bryan/College Station area. Continually striving for excellence, Our highly trained professionals are poised and ready to take on an ever changing healthcare environment by incorporating technology and surpassing standards in the industry with confidence. Patients depend on the success of Thrive’s aggressive H2H (hospital to home) program which relies on being proactive rather than reactive and insures that re-admittance to the hospital is kept at a minimum. At Thrive, enabling independence is a top priority and with a multidisciplinary team, we can deliver a care plan truly based on individual needs. Some of the comprehensive services that Thrive utilizes to optimize our patients treatment at home include Skilled Nursing, Wound Care, Diabetic Teaching and Care, Tracheotomy Care, Physical and Speech Therapy, Cardiac Pulmonary Care and Medication Management. When searching for a home health care solution, Thrive encourages potential patients to request information and check out our website at Patients are allowed the comfort of home while receiving top of the line care from skilled professionals who look forward to addressing specialized needs. Realizing that the whole of a person contributes to healing, Thrive is pleased to incorporate the support of a Master’s certified dietitian to assist in nutritional planning for wellness. This added element is a testament to Thrive’s commitment to the comprehensive strategy they employ for their patients. Thrive embraces technology as evidenced by our quick adaptation to the CHAP system of computerized record keeping designed to improve communication between healthcare providers and the families of patients. The CHAP system mandates that policies and procedures are above and beyond the state imposed standards and though several home healthcare providers are registered, not all are accredited. Thrive has been accredited since 2007 and continues to advance in all areas of care. Enthusiasm and support for our community is exhibited through the ongoing participation of the Surviving and Thriving, Breast Cancer Awareness event. This community event provides resources and support for local breast cancer patients and according in keeping with our philosophy, “Support for this event is a no brainer!”.

• In-Home Care Education • Bowel & Bladder training • Physical Therapy • Surgical Recovery Care • Medication Management • Skilled Nursing • Speech, Physical and Occupational Therapies

• Wound care • Diabetic Care and Education • Nutritional Plan and Therapy • Health managemen • Cardiac Pulmonary Care • Home Health Aide

979-846-1213 •

nathans bbq

smitty’s cafe

A full service restaurant with fresh baked goods, cake, pies and more Mon-Friday 10am-10pm • Saturday 6:30am-10pm

1600 N. Park St. Brenham, TX

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Restaurant Review H Dining Guide H Recipes



Taste of

t’s hard to imagine the much anticipated holiday meals without our Texas pecans. They’re a perfect snack served seasoned or raw, but they add just the right texture and flavor to pies, breads, and other favorite desserts and dishes. Besides being favored for taste, pecans are also a healthy choice. They are full of vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Pecans are also high in antioxidants, so no need to feel guilty when you go back for that second slice of pecan pie. •


TEXAS i n s ea s o n

Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Makes 2 loaves

3/4 cup butter, softened 8 ounces cream cheese, softened 1-1/2 cup sugar 2 large eggs 3 cups bread flour 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 1-1/2 cups mashed bananas (about 4 medium bananas) 1 cup chopped pecans, lightly toasted 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract Beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed until creamy. Gradually add sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add eggs, beating just until blended after each addition. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; gradually add to butter mixture, beating at low speed just until blended. Stir in bananas, pecans, and vanilla. Spoon batter into 2 greased and floured 8x4-inch loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a long wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean and sides pull away from pan, shielding with aluminum foil last 15 minutes to prevent browning, if necessary. Cool bread in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes. Remove from pans, and cool on wire racks before slicing.

Pecans retain their freshness, flavor, and nutrients with proper storage. Store pecans in an airtight container or freezer bags in your freezer or refrigerator, and you will have delicious treats all year round. Learn more at

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 67

Taste of

TEXAS tradition

Authentic Tamale Making IJIJIJIJ

A Family Holiday Tradition




touch of salt, a hint of chili powder, a dollop of pork lard and a splash of water mix with masa to make an authentic Mexican dough. When topped with perfectly seasoned pork, it is much more than a traditional dish—it is a labor of love. The Lopez family of Georgetown gathers each holiday season to continue the tamale making tradition that began with the family matriarch, Ines Lopez, more than 80 years

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ago. Pork roast has replaced the hog head used by Mrs. Lopez, and gone are the days that the family had to purchase cornhusks from a farm or grind corn to make masa, but the basic process remains the same. Making tamales is not difficult but it is very time consuming, so preparations begin the day before. Cornhusks are cleaned and soaked in hot water overnight so they will be pliable and easier to work with for the task at hand. The pork roast is boiled and cooked

until tender and then cut into small pieces. Ingredients, dishes, and utensils are organized with great care to prepare for the 60 or so dozen tamales that will be made the following day. At around 6:00 a.m., members of the Lopez, Bracamontez, DeLeon, and Vasquez families arrive at the Lopez home to begin the assembly line process of adding ingredients to the masa. Once seasoned, the masa is kneaded until smooth and spreadable. It is


Ines Lopez

Lopez Family Tamale Recipe

Photo: Penny de los Santos

“We all sit down to eat tamales, enjoy some spirits, and reminisce about the days when all twelve of Mrs. Lopez’s children would gather in the kitchen to watch mother single handedly prepare traditional tamales from scratch.” ~ Patsy Lopez Bracamontez

then spread onto each of the over 700 clean cornhusks which are topped with a tablespoon of meat and carefully folded to ensure the meat stays in place. After each tamale has been transferred to a steamer to cook for an hour and a half, it is divided out among the participating families to complete the process. “When the whole process is over at the end of a long day, the younger members of the families sample the first batch of tamales. We all sit down to eat tamales, enjoy some spirits, and reminisce about the days when all twelve of Mrs. Lopez’s children would

gather in the kitchen to watch mother single handedly prepare traditional tamales from scratch,” says daughter, Patsy Lopez Bracamontez. “We also get a chuckle out of the fact that mother always critiqued our tamales, even when she was in the rest home. We had either too much salt, not enough chili powder, or had not cooked them long enough. As hard as we tried, they never turned out like hers! She is no longer with us, but we think she would be proud to know the tradition she started so many years ago continues today.” •

“The family recipe is based on taste rather than exact measurements,” says Mrs. Lopez’s son, Isaac Lopez, who shares their basic traditional recipe: Clean and soak cornhusks in hot water 24 hours before tamale preparation. Cook meat the day before tamale preparation. Dough *Masa Broth from pork Salt Chili powder Pork lard Combine water, salt, chili powder and a little pork lard with the masa. Knead the mixture until it is smooth and spreadable. Spread enough masa onto each cornhusk to cover thoroughly and evenly. *Store-bought masa (ground corn used to make dough) can be purchased from an authentic Mexican grocer. Meat Pork roast (or other preferred cut of meat) Water Salt Chili powder Garlic Cumin Cook meat the day before but do not add ingredients (to taste) until the day of tamale preparation. Spoon approximately one tablespoon of meat onto each tamale and fold so meat stays in place. Transfer tamales into a steamer to cook for one and a half hours. Leftover tamales keep well in the refrigerator for a few days or can be frozen in an airtight container for up to 3 months.

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 69

Taste of

TEXAS recipes

HolidayFavorites Molasses Sugar Cookies A rich, spicy holiday favorite that stores and travels well. One of Santa’s favorite! 3/4 cup shortening 1 cup sugar 1/4 cup molasses 1 egg 2 tsp. baking soda

2 cups flour 1/2 tsp. clove 1/2 tsp. ginger 1 tsp. cinnamon 1/2 tsp. salt


s you prepare to gather with friends and family, try some of our favorite holiday recipes. We have collected some of our best sweets and treats from years past. From cookies and pies that will satisfy any sweet tooth to drinks that will keep you warm and kicking on even the coldest night, add these recipes to your holiday menu and make some memories. • Ovida Williams’ Sweet Potato Pie

Melt shortening in saucepan over low heat. Remove and cool. Mix in sugar, molasses and egg. Add dry ingredients and mix well. Chill. Shape into 3/4 inch balls and roll in cinnamon/sugar. Bake at 375 degrees, 8-10 minutes.

2 cups sweet potatoes 1/2 stick butter 1/2 cup white sugar 1/2 cup brown sugar 1 egg 1/4 tsp. cinnamon 1/4 tsp. nutmeg 1 tsp. vanilla 1/4 cup flour 1 tsp. baking powder


Mix flour and baking powder. Set aside. Cook sweet potatoes until tender. Cool. Mix butter, sugars, egg, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla with cooled potatoes. Add flour and baking powder mixture. Mix well. Pour into unbaked pie shell and bake at 350 for 1-1/2 hours, or until knife inserted into the middle comes out clean. (Cover the pie shell edges with foil to prevent burning as soon as it is nicely browned.)

H Marilyn’s Oatmeal, Chocolate and Peanut Butter Chip Cookie 3/4 cup butter 1/2 cup sugar 1 cup brown sugar 2 eggs 1 tsp. vanilla 1-1/4 cup flour 1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda 1/2 tsp. salt 2-1/2 cups oats 1 cup pecans 1 – 12 oz. package milk chocolate chips 1 – 12 oz. Reese’s peanut butter chips

Cream the butter and the sugars together until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla, beat until creamy. Blend in dry ingredients. Add pecans, milk chocolate chips and peanut butter chips. Drop onto ungreased baking sheet. (I like to use a small ice cream scoop for uniformity for this.) Bake at 375 degrees for 12-15 minutes. For softer, chewy cookies, be sure not to over bake.

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Margie’s Homemade Cranberry Sauce Recipe Yields approx. 1200 mls (5 cups)

Put in a large pot (Dutch oven): 2 bags of fresh cranberries Place berries in water to rinse and fish out any dubious looking berries and all that don’t float. Strain, rinse and put in pot. 1-1/2 cups raisins – Add to pot. 1 cup orange juice – Add to pot. 3 apples – pealed, cored and diced. Add apples as diced to avoid browning; toss with juice. 2 pears – pealed, cored and diced. Add pears as diced to avoid browning; toss with juice. 2 cups sugar – Pour over mixture. 2 tbs. grated orange peel – Stir in. 2 tsp. ground cinnamon – Stir in. 1 pinch of nutmeg – Stir in. Mix ingredients well. Put Dutch oven on a compatible stove element on high heat. Stir until liquid starts to bubble. Turn heat down a little but it should continue to bubble/simmer. Constantly stir until the sauce begins to thicken. (Constant stirring will keep the mixture from sticking to the bottom or turning brown. Even if it should turn brown it tastes as nice but won’t look as pretty.) Once the sauce thickens and cranberries give way, becoming ‘saucy’, remove from heat and let cool. Cooling: A) If you wish the sauce to cool faster, pour into a plastic container or another pot so it is removed from the heat from the Dutch oven. B) If you are in a REALLY big hurry, place it in a plastic container and immerse in ice or very cold water, leaving the top open. For decorative purposes, place in Mason jars or other decorative container. It fills about 3 400ml containers.


TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 71

TASTE of TEXAS recipes

Mexican Chocolate Chewies From The Homesick Texan Cookbook by Lisa Fain


Chocolate chewies are light, crisp, and, yes, chewy chocolate cookies that are studded with chocolate chips and pecans. You see them at bakeries all over Texas, and yet not too many people make them at home. There’s really no reason for this, especially as they’re a snap to make. I’ve added a bit of cinnamon and chipotle chile powder to give them a bit of spice and heat. ABOUT 36 COOKIES 2 cups pecans, roughly chopped 2-1/2 cups powdered sugar 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon chipotle chile powder 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt 3 large egg whites 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips


Chocolate Truffle (Makes 10 truffles)

Ingredients: 14 oz. semi-sweet chocolate 1 lb. granulated sugar plus 2 oz. 4-1/2 oz. unsweetened chocolate 9 each eggs 14 oz. unsalted butter 9 each egg yolks 7 oz. cornstarch ••••••••••

Procedure: 1. In a big bowl mix chocolates and butter and melt in double boiler. 2. Sift together sugar and cornstarch. 3. Mix chocolates with sugar mixture with whisk until well incorporated. 4. Add eggs and yolks and mix well. Make sure all eggs are incorporated. 5. Scoop into large greased muffing tins (3/4 inch high). 6. Bake at 350º for 15 minutes, then rotate and reduce heat to 300º for approximately 15 minutes. Center should be soft while outside will be set. 7. Cool until just slightly warm and unmold 8. Serve with fresh raspberries and ice cream.

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1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 2. While oven is heating, arrange the chopped pecans in a skillet and place in the oven for 5 minutes or until they’ve turned a bit darker brown (but not black) and smell fragrant. Mix roasted pecans with the powdered sugar, cocoa powder, cinnamon, chipotle chile powder, and salt. 3. Stir the egg whites into the dry mixture by hand (or beat with a stand mixer on low) just until the batter is well mixed. Stir in the vanilla extract and chocolate chips. Drop tablespoon-size portions of batter on the sheet an inch apart, about six per sheet, as these cookies will spread while baking. Bake for 15 minutes or until crackling on the surface. 4. Remove sheet from oven, lift the parchment paper with the cookies still on it off the sheet, and cool on a rack. Allow cookies to cool for 20 minutes before removing from paper, as they’re very delicate. They will keep for a few days in an airtight container.

Cocoa 3 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder 1/4 cup sugar 4 cup milk 1/4 tsp. vanilla miniature marshmallows Preparation: Blend cocoa and sugar in a small bowl. In a medium saucepan, heat milk to scalding. Mix about 1/3 cup of the hot milk into the cocoa-sugar mixture, then pour cocoa mixture into hot milk in the saucepan; stir until well blended. Stir in vanilla. Serve with mini marshmallows. Serves 4.


The Schulenburger

This variation on the classic Knickerbocker was designed for Sengelmann Hall by Bill Norris and uses Texas liquors and local blackberries. In cocktail shaker, combine 2 oz. Railean Reserve XO Rum, 1 oz. lime juice, 1 oz. berry syrup* and 1 bar spoon of Paula’s Texas Orange with ice. Shake well and strain into iced Collins glass. Garnish with fresh berries and fruit. *Seasonal Berry Syrup 1 pint berries 1 cup sugar 1 cup water

Hot Mulled Cider 2 qts. apple cider 1/2 cup orange juice 1/4 cup lemon juice

4 tbsp. brown sugar 2 tsp. whole cloves 3 cinnamon sticks

1 tsp. nutmeg 2 oranges, sliced 2 lemons, sliced

Mix all ingredients and bring just to a boil. Simmer about 10 minutes. Strain and serve. May be garnished with fresh orange or lemon slice, or a cinnamon stick in each mug.

In a heat proof container, crush berries with muddler. Combine sugar and water in saucepan, bring to boil and dissolve sugar. Pour hot mixture over berries, cover and refrigerate for at least four hours, up to overnight. Strain out solids and bottle. Yields enough for 8-10 drinks and stores well refrigerated for 7-10 days. It is also delicious on ice cream and desserts. •

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 73

Taste of



Taste oo Texas Give The




he foodies on your holiday list will love these cookbooks that showcase the food of Texas and include a hefty dose of storytelling about who and what make our Lone Star State stand out. Of course, amid the engaging tales, you’ll also find recipes designed to inspire.

H Capitol Hill Cooks by Linda Bauer LBJ’s Favorite Chili

Lyndon B. Johnson, 1963-1969

George Washington’s Eggnog George Washington 1789-1797

1 pint brandy 1/2 pint rye whisky 1/2 pint Jamaican rum 1 dozen eggs 1 tablespoon sugar 1 quarter pint sherry 1 quart cream 1 quart milk Mix liquors together first. Separate yolks and whites of eggs. Add sugar to beaten yolks and mix well. Add liquor to beaten yolks,drop by drop first, and slowly beat. Add cream and milk, slowly beating. Beat whites of eggs until stiff and fold slowly into mixture. Let set in a cool place for several days; taste frequently. This recipe was recently found, written in Washington’s hand.

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4 pounds coarsely ground beef (chili-grind) 1 large onion, chopped 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 teaspoon dried oregano 1 teaspoon ground cumin 6 teaspoons chili powder 32 ounces (2 cans) tomatoes 2 cups hot water Salt to taste In a large frying pan, brown meat with onion and garlic until meat is lightly browned; transfer ingredients to a large kettle. Add oregano, cumin, chili powder, tomatoes, salt, and hot water. Bring just to a boil; lower heat and simmer, covered, for approximately 1 hour. Remove from heat. Skim off grease and serve. Makes 12 servings.

Woodlands author Linda Bauer’s book combines myriad recipes from senators, congressmen, and presidents. It’s a musthave for anyone with a love of food, country, and family. “This has been a passion of mine for so many years,” she says of the project, which began after she’d compiled a cookbook about the Reagan White House. Along the way, she’d collected several recipes from various presidential administrations, and she’s put them into this well-packed volume that’s equal parts how-to and history lesson. Proceeds from the book go to Helping a Hero, a non-profit organization that helps adapt and build houses for soldiers wounded in action in Afghanistan and Iraq. For your holiday get-togethers, Bauer recommends a bi-partisan approach: “Try the recipes for Lyndon Johnson’s tea and John F. Kennedy’s pie!”

Lone Star Chefs by John DeMers

What does it mean to be a chef in Texas? That’s the question author John DeMers set out to answer as he rambled across Houston, Dallas, Austin, Marfa, and points in between, talking to chefs, touring their kitchens, learning their stories, and collecting their recipes. “Texas cuisine isn’t all chicken fried steak and cheese enchiladas anymore,” says DeMers. “In fact, many of the chefs who are ‘most Texas’ came here from someplace else, like Robert del Grande from a big, loud, food-loving Italian family in San Francisco. Of course, there’s always Stephan Pyles, who not only was born in Texas but grew up in a family that owned a truck stop. It’s hard to get to be more Texas than that.” Look for recipes from the Tyson Cole’s Uchi and Robert Del Grande’s RDG + Bar Annie, among about a dozen others. Amid their recipes, you’ll learn about their restaurants, their passions, and how they relate their experiences from wide backgrounds to cooking here in Texas.

ookdbLovoeok C k c i L t Sal Story of Land, Family, an A


be t ro


ica jess



H The Salt Lick Cookbook by Jessica Dupuy and Scott Roberts

Originally, this was to be a book about barbeque, but co-author Jessica Dupuy says it quickly became a book about so much more. “It’s about family, land, and love,” she says of the volume that takes its name from the venerable Hill Country dining spot. “So we decided to tell the whole story. It gives so much more depth to what people experience when they drive out to The Salt Lick in Driftwood.” She and Salt Lick owner

Scott Roberts spent hours driving around Driftwood, talking about the place and its history, and Dupuy saw how deep his Texas roots ran along those back roads and how that history helped grow the family barbeque restaurant. Dupuy says the brisket recipe is one to try, but she also loves the blueberry muffin recipe. “It’s so simple, but such a welcome treat on a Saturday morning.” >>

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 75

TASTE of TEXAS cookbooks

Street Food of Mexico by Hugo with Ruben Ortega

Simple Mexican food reaches glorious haute cuisine heights at Hugo’s Houston spot. In this, his first book, he looks to his heritage, and the result is a collection of recipes that took brothers Hugo and Ruben back to their native Mexico City on a journey into their history, making this part food tome, part travel guide. He is quick to point out that “street food” doesn’t mean the food from trucks and carts, necessarily, but can include the recipes from workers who would trek from Mexico’s villages to work in the city. The flavors they brought with them and shared with others resulted in an explosion of culture and cooking styles. “It’s been so wonderful to explain our culture and our food to people!” he exclaims. “And we showcase fresh tastes, fresh, native ingredients like corn and tomato. That’s why I love this so much!” •

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Street Food of Mexico

Tamales de dulce

Sweet Tamales with Rum Raisins Makes 16-20 pieces The best dessert in our house growing up was a nice, hot tamale de dulce straight out of the tamalera—a Mexican steamer specifically designed to make tamales — and a rich cup of hot chocolate. In this recipe, I included one of my favorite additions, rum soaked raisins. Rum is a popular ingredient in Mexican desserts, and I try to use it in my recipes as much as possible. In this recipe, it gives an extra twist to my mother’s memorable tamales de dulce. To make this recipe successfully, I have called for masa harina para tamales, to give just the right level of sweetness and lard to ensure a fluffy tamale. For tamales: 1/2 cup raisins 3 tablespoon white rum 3 cups masa harina para tamales 2 teaspoons baking powder 1-1/4 cups granulated sugar 1 cup lard 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt 2 teaspoon vanilla extract 6 drops red food coloring, optional Corn husks as needed, softened in warm water For tamales: Place raisins, rum and 1/2 cup water in a small saucepan over high heat. Bring to a full boil. Remove immediately from heat. Strain raisins and transfer to a bowl to cool completely before using. Using a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, add masa harina para tamales, baking powder, sugar, lard, salt, vanilla and food coloring, if using, into the bowl. Mix on medium speed for 1 minute to incorporate ingredients. While on medium speed, add 2 cups water in a steady stream. Increase speed to high and mix for 6 minutes. Test readiness of masa. Fold in raisins. Working one at a time, place each corn husk, or two depending on size, in the palm of your hand with the point end facing away from you. Scoop 1/4 cup masa onto the center and spread into a rectangle, 3/4 inch from the top and 1/4 inch from the bottom. Fold in the sides of the husk to the center, enclosing the masa. Fold up the point, forming a small bundle. Secure each bundle by loosely tying a thin strip of husk around the center of the tamale. Place tamales in steamer, covered with a clean, damp kitchen towel then the lid, and cook about 40 minutes to 1 hour.

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208 N Main Ave., Rockdale, TX 512-446-7905 TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 77


GUIDE 2012

JANUARY January 1 Black-Eyed Pea & Cornbread Cook-off – Fredericksburg Partake of these magic peas on New Year’s Day and have good luck throughout the year. Enjoy live music, wine, and the best black-eyed peas and cornbread in Texas! Visit 15th Annual Polar Bear Dip – South Padre Island Join hundreds for a refreshing dip in the Gulf of Mexico! Free admission with t-shirts available for purchase on site. Visit January 12 Longest Causeway Run & Fitness Walk – South Padre Island Hundreds of runners and walkers join in for a view from Queen Isabella Causeway! Visit Spindletop Anniversary Celebration – Beaumont The Spindletop-Gladys City Boomtown Museum hosts re-enactments of the gusher and life in the oil-boom era. Visit January 12-13 Winter Antiques and Decorative Arts Show – Brenham Includes antique, country, and formal furniture, pottery, glass, silver, linens, jewelry, collectibles and folk art. A farmers’ market also is on the grounds. Visit January 13 3M Half Marathon & Relay – Austin Athletes enjoy this fast, downhill race. Run as an individual or two-person relay team. Visit January 14 Unity Theatre presents Music from the Movies – Brenham This highly entertaining concert featuring Rob Landes includes great Academy Award winning songs, and some that were nominated but lost. Some of the songs are “The Continental,” “The Trolley Song,” “New York, New York,” “True Love,” “Lara’s Theme,” and “Somewhere over the Rainbow.” Visit January 18-19 Winter Antiques Show – Round Top A wide variety of exhibitors with antiques, collectibles, and treasures galore! Come see us in the Big Red Barn. Visit January 19 Bishop’s Palace Behind-the-Scenes Tour – Galveston See parts of this famous Galveston mansion that are normally off limits. Visit

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International Festival Institute Organ Recital – Round Top Presenting Alain Declert, Organist. Singing Bach on flues. Preludes and Fugues, Fantasy in G, Choral Preludes. Visit Chili Quest and Beer Fest – Galveston Chili lovers will be able to stroll down The Strand on a crisp winter day and sample warm, spicy chili from teams competing for the best chili title in the Lone Star State. Festival activities include a 5K Fun Run, chili cook-off , jalapeño eating contest, margarita contest, washers tournament, Strand Merchant Walk-About, live entertainment, vendors, and of course, beer tasting. Visit Lots for Sale!—Auctioning off Washington – Washington Come on out and “purchase your lot” in the new town of Washington! Lots will be “auctioned” off on the old town site and you’re encouraged to join in on the bidding. Learn about the founding of Washington as well as the tools used to lay the old town out. The program will culminate with a live auction of town lots so be sure and hang around so you can get in on the excitement! Visit January 20 Fredericksburg Music Club presents Ava Pine – Fredericksburg As a 2011 Grammy nominee, and praised by audiences and critics alike for her “sheer vocal beauty, ease and eloquence” and “rewarding musicianship,” Ava Pine excels in music ranging from Baroque to Contemporary. She draws from a rich well of experience in both classical music and the theatrical stage, which she uses to maximum effect to communicate with her audiences, whether singing opera, oratorio, or giving a recital. Visit January 21 Martin Luther King March and Festival – Austin Begins at the MLK statue on the UT Austin campus and runs to the capitol building and Huston-Tillotson University, where music and activities await. Visit celebration-events/march-and-festival. Martin Luther King Jr. March and Rally – San Antonio Educational, inspirational and celebratory events honor one of the nation’s most revered civil rights leaders. Visit

January 22 Port & Pairings Wineries on the Fredericksburg Wine Road – Fredericksburg Each winery will showcase their Port and pair it with a scrumptious treat. Everything from chocolates to cheese to a specialty prepared by one of the local restaurants. Each winery will create a unique pairing experience and offer their regular wine tasting line-up as well. Many of the wineries will also have music and other festivities. Visit January 25-26 Hot Hearts – Beaumont Combines the messages of the most effective youth communicators and the best in contemporary Christian music with state-ofthe-art video and light shows for a high-energy weekend. Visit January 26 Wild Game Dinner – Bandera Enjoy everything from venison chili to wild boar, bear and elk. Visit Alabama-Coushatta Children’s Powwow – Livingston Come to the Alabama-Coushatta Reservation for a dance competition for children, gourd dance, and adult contests. Visit Luckenbach Blues Festival – Luckenbach All-day event features local, regional, and Texas blues artists. Visit Texas Citrus Fiesta – Mission Includes the Parade of Oranges, a carnival, cook-off, live music and fun fair. Visit

FEBRUARY February 1-12 Mardi Gras! Galveston – Galveston The extravagance found in Texas’ largest Mardi Gras celebration starts with the beads! More than 3 million beads will be thrown and that’s just the beginning of the elaborate parades, headliner performances, family events, feasting, and other festivities that come with hosting Mardi Gras island style. Visit February 7-24 Unity Theatre Presents “The Chalk Garden” – Brenham A mysterious woman applies as a governess at a country house in Sussex and she is interviewed by eccentric Mrs. St. Maugham and her equally eccentric granddaughter, Laurel. Laurel is a precocious liar who, along with the butler Maitland, is preoccupied with ‘true crime’ stories. The enigmatic governess, Miss Madrigal, appears to be hiding something which they are determined to uncover. Things unravel and dark secrets are revealed

Catch our next issue for more exciting events.

when an elderly Judge comes to lunch. Visit February 9-10 Star Wars Fan Days – Plano Come to this annual event to view all things Star Wars! Visit for more info including ticket prices. The Great Train Expo – Houston The Great Train Expo is the largest traveling model train show in the country! Visit February 16 International Festival Institute Piano Concert – Round Top Recognized as one of the truly important pianists of his generation, James Dick brings keyboard sonorities of captivating opulence and brilliance to performances that radiate intellectual insight and emotional authenticity. The legendary founder of the Round Top Festival Institute will perform works by J.S. Bach, Beethoven, Francis Poulenc, and Sergei Prokofiev. Visit The Republic is No More!—The Annexation of Texas – Washington Join us as we recount the final moments of the Republic and the sentiments of old time Texians surrounding annexation. The program will

explore annexation through contemporary accounts and documents giving visitors a firsthand look at this momentous occasion through the eyes of those who witnessed it. Visit February 17 Song and Prose: A Texian Lyrical Narrative – Washington Join us for an exploration of Texas history captured in song and poem. Rhyme and melody serve as devices to help us remember, to help us project emotion. Visit February 21-24 QuiltCon – Austin QuiltCon is the inaugural international conference and show by and for the Modern Quilt Guild. The first modern quilting event of its kind, QuiltCon features top modern quilting instructors and will attract attendees from around the world. It includes a juried modern quilt show with cash prizes, vendors, lectures, workshops from top modern quilters, and more. Visit

February 21-March 10 Navasota Theatre Alliance presents “Hot Property” – Navasota Laughter, mistaken identities, and even a “sting” conspire to make this an irresistible comedy! Don’t miss this play written by Fred Carmichael. Visit February 23 Birds Nest Trade Show – Port Aransas Don’t miss this nature related trade show, coordinated by the Port Aransas Chamber of Commerce/Tourist Bureau. The Bird’s Nest Bistro provides snacks and refreshments during the day for you to enjoy! Visit February 23-24 33rd Annual Boerne Hill Country Antiques Show – Boerne Exhibitors gather their treasures from the estates of this great country and save their best for this nationally acclaimed antiques show. Collectors from all over the state, as well as many from out of state, find real antiques —no reproductions or imports—to add to their collections or decorate their homes. This prestigious and lovely show is sure to have something for every antiques collector. Visit boerne-optimist-antique-show.htm.

BILOXI BLUES 2013 Texas Community College By Neil Simon Speech and Theatre Association February 21 - 24, 2013 Play Festival Entry AN EVENING OF Produced as part of the TENNESSEE WILLIAMS Theatre Arts Student Showcase April 12 & 13, 2013

TexasLiVE | Volume 6 Issue 5 79

Scene in


Sewing Girl at Main Street Bethlehem Each year, Main Street Bethlehem in Burnet recreates the ancient city of Christ’s birth. Visitors experience the streets of Bethlehem filled with Roman soldiers, merchants, craftspeople, taxpayers, beggars, and animals and can follow a trail to the cave where Christ was born. PHOTO BY MICHAEL TUUK

l l To submit your “Scene in Texas” picture or story, please email us at

80 Volume 6 Issue 5 | TexasLiVE |

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A l l T h i n gs Te x a n

Volume 6 Issue 5, 2012 • Holiday

15Holida olida Recies Favorite

See the Greatest Manuscript Discovery of the 20th Century

The Top Restaurant Row in Texas

Two Days in Boerne Calvert’s Kolache Twins $4.95

Serving Czech Pastries with a Smile and a Dance

Family Outing Texas Pumpkin Patches


Books for Young Texans

Christmas in the Lone Star State What to See and Do This Holiday Season

Hunting Lessons with Dad

What One Father Taught His Daughter Volume 6 Issue 5

TexasLIVE All Things Texan

The Dead Sea Scrolls

A Gift from the Heart

Readers Share Their Favorite Handmade Gifts

Texas Live - Holiday 2012  

Texas Live - Holiday 2012

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